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What You Need to Know About Nursing Assistant

Occupation Description Provide basic patient care under direction of nursing staff. Perform duties such as feed, bathe, dress, groom, or move patients, or change linens. May transfer or transport patients. Includes nursing care attendants, nursing aides, and nursing attendants.

A Day in the Life of a Nursing Assistant

  • Transport specimens, laboratory items, or pharmacy items, ensuring proper documentation and delivery to authorized personnel.
  • Transport patients to treatment units, testing units, operating rooms, or other areas, using wheelchairs, stretchers, or moveable beds.
  • Measure and record food and liquid intake or urinary and fecal output, reporting changes to medical or nursing staff.
  • Turn or reposition bedridden patients.
  • Exercise patients who are comatose, paralyzed, or have restricted mobility.
  • Position or hold patients in position for surgical preparation.

What a Nursing Assistant Should Know

When polled, Nursing Assistants say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

  • Medical Attendant
  • Nurse’s Assistant
  • Geriatric Nursing Assistant (GNA)
  • Nurse Sitter
  • Institutional Aide

Nursing Assistant Job Outlook

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 1,510,300 jobs in the United States for Nursing Assistant. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 11.5% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 173,400 new jobs for Nursing Assistant by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 195,100 job openings in this field each year.

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The states with the most job growth for Nursing Assistant are Arizona, Utah, and Colorado. Watch out if you plan on working in Connecticut, Wisconsin, or Vermont. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Nursing Assistant Average Salary

The average yearly salary of a Nursing Assistant ranges between $21,290 and $39,560.

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Nursing Assistants who work in Alaska, New York, or Hawaii, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Nursing Assistants in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $24,110
Alaska $39,830
Arizona $31,450
Arkansas $25,080
California $35,220
Colorado $32,610
Connecticut $33,390
Delaware $30,780
District of Columbia $33,510
Florida $26,840
Georgia $25,870
Hawaii $35,770
Idaho $27,400
Illinois $28,810
Indiana $27,210
Iowa $29,120
Kansas $26,210
Kentucky $26,800
Louisiana $22,750
Maine $28,710
Maryland $31,310
Massachusetts $33,630
Michigan $30,130
Minnesota $33,710
Mississippi $23,100
Missouri $25,930
Montana $29,110
Nebraska $28,730
Nevada $35,130
New Hampshire $32,200
New Jersey $30,380
New Mexico $28,310
New York $37,010
North Carolina $25,570
North Dakota $33,990
Ohio $27,570
Oklahoma $25,690
Oregon $33,230
Pennsylvania $30,630
Rhode Island $31,340
South Carolina $25,390
South Dakota $26,820
Tennessee $26,400
Texas $27,030
Utah $27,880
Vermont $30,730
Virginia $28,770
Washington $32,130
West Virginia $26,410
Wisconsin $29,590
Wyoming $30,910

What Tools & Technology do Nursing Assistants Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Nursing Assistants may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • MEDITECH software
  • Medical procedure coding software
  • Epic Systems
  • Medical condition coding software
  • Billing software
  • GE Healthcare Centricity EMR
  • PointClickCare
  • Medical record charting software

Becoming a Nursing Assistant

What education or degrees do I need to become a Nursing Assistant?

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How Long Does it Take to Become a Nursing Assistant?

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Who Employs Nursing Assistants?

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Below are examples of industries where Nursing Assistants work:

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References:

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More about our data sources and methodologies.

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