What is a State Tested Nursing Assistant?
State Tested Nursing Assistants, also known as STNAs, assist physicians, registered nurses (RNs) and licensed practical nurses (LPNs). STNA duties are primarily comprised of providing patients with care. STNAs are not much different from certified nursing assistants (CNAs). Each of these nursing jobs mandates formal training along with subsequent testing, passing a state license exam, and a criminal background check.
What is an STNA?
In short, STNA duties are support-oriented. STNAs provide support services that help nurses and physicians take care of patients. For example, STNAs assist patients with personal needs including personal hygiene, bathroom activities, eating, drinking, and beyond. State tested nursing assistants also help patients with ambulation and transportation in the living space. Perhaps most importantly, STNAs monitor patient well-being. However, STNA duties do not include providing medication or conducting any type of medical procedure.
Patients often lean on STNAs for help with daily activities ranging from dressing to hair care, skin care, grooming, bathing, etc. Whether a patient needs assistance with walking, getting in and out of a wheelchair or altering position while in bed, the STNA should be there to help. Above all, the STNA should monitor patient vital signs. In fact, some STNAs work within patient homes, providing meal prep and even performing housekeeping. All of the care provided to patients is documented within each patient’s personalized medical chart.
STNA Work Environments
STNAs work everywhere from nursing homes to hospitals, patient homes, and other facilities where care is provided. This type of work is fast-paced as those in need of STNA care are incapable of performing most aspects of self-care on their own. Those who enjoy spending time on their feet and staying active will find this line of work quite rewarding. It is also important to note STNAs are required to lift patients, regardless of whether they work in the patient’s home, a home health care agency, or another healthcare facility. STNAs who primarily work in patient homes should have a passion for working in an independent manner as they are often the sole source of assistance for patients in desperate need of personal care.
The Road to Becoming a STNA
In order to become a state tested nursing assistant, a candidate must finish a course of education including study in a traditional classroom environment along with clinical work experience. STNAs study subjects ranging from nutrition to health, biology and beyond. Aspiring STNAs also master practical skills such as the monitoring of patient vital signs, bathing patients, transferring and positioning patients, and so on. STNA educational programs mandate a clinical component where students provide care to patients in nursing home settings beneath a qualified instructor’s supervision.
Once you have successfully finished the training program and meet the state’s requirements for hours of training, it is time to take the state tested nursing assistant certification exam. The certification exam is nothing to fear. This written test is comprised of less than 100 questions centered on the five primary nursing aide areas of skill. As long as you finish the exam within 90 minutes with a passing grade, you can enroll in the state’s Nurse Aide Registry and work as an STNA.
Interested in Becoming a STNA? Contact Trinity School of Allied Health and Sciences Today
If you are interested in becoming a STNA, be proactive by getting the ball rolling on your education and training. Trinity School of Allied Health and Sciences is here to educate and train you for STNA duties, help you fulfill your potential, and ultimately maximize your earnings. Contact Trinity School of Allied Health and Sciences to learn more about STNA education and training Classes are enrolling now.