CNA Training Skills: Bedpans

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When you’re working with patients after CNA training who are incapable of walking or standing, they will often need to use a bedpan to relieve themselves. If they can’t use it on their own, it will be up to you to help them; doing this correctly can help them avoid messy situations that can cause embarrassment and frustration.

While you will learn how to properly help a patient use a bedpan during CNA training, here is a little refresher in case you need a reminder of how to help them correctly.

Helping Patients With Bedpans After CNA Training

The first step in helping a patient after CNA trainingwith any task is to wash your hands. You should wash your hands when you enter the room, and then again before you begin the task. You should then explain to the patient what you will be doing (helping them use the bedpan) and shut the door to the room or close the curtain to provide them with as much privacy as possible after CNA training.

You’ll need gloves to complete this task after CNA training. Once you have these on, instruct the patient to lie in the supine position, or lay on his back. If he can not do this on his own, help him, then help him to roll over to one side or the other.

Once you have the patient in position, place the bedpan against his buttocks. Then, as you learned in CNA training, help the patient return to a supine position. Instruct the patient to spread his legs so you can see if the bedpan is in the proper position. Once you have confirmed this, raise the head of the bed to a more comfortable position. Keep in mind that lying completely flat isn’t what you’re used to when you use the restroom, and your patient won’t be used to it either. By elevating the head of the bed, you can give your patient the same feeling as he would have if he were on a toilet.

Give your patient some privacy. If possible, place the call light next to the patient and exit the room, taking care to make sure that the bed rails are up. Instruct the patient to press the call light when they are done using the bedpan. Before leaving the room, remove your gloves and wash your hands thoroughly.

When the patient is done using the bedpan, wash your hands and put on a new pair of gloves, just as you learned in CNA training. Lower the head of the bed so the patient is lying flat again, then help the patient move to his side. Be careful when doing this, as it can be easy to spill the contents of the bedpan. Use your hand to support the bedpan and keep it flat while you are turning the patient. If the contents do spill, immediately change the linens.

Place the bedpan away from the patient, then clean the patient’s buttocks and genitals. Help his dress and return to a comfortable position in the bed. Provide him with a clean washcloth to wash his hands after CNA training.

Take the bedpan to the patient’s restroom, measure the output, and record it properly. Dispose of the contents. In some cases after CNA training, you will need to dispose of the bedpan. In others, you will need to wash the bedpan properly so it is sanitary and may be used again.

Remove your gloves, wash your hands thoroughly, and check to make sure your patient doesn’t need any other help before you leave the room. Be sure that the call light button is in a position where the patient can reach it as well after CNA training.

Bedpans and Patients After CNA Training

Some patients you’ll care for will need more help than others. Be ready to take care of them all after CNA training.

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