After CNA training you can go right into hospital or nursing home employment, or you may want to consider a career as an elderly companion. It takes a special kind of person who is both compassionate and patient. Could this be your career after CNA training?
After CNA Training: Becoming an Elderly Companion
Elderly companions visit the homes of older individuals and keep them company during the day. They perform a variety of tasks learned during CNA training, many of which are unrelated to health care. However, because they have the training to recognize health problems and deal with medical situations, they are highly prized caregivers.
Many times, elderly companions are called into a home during a time the primary caregiver can not be present. You may be required to stay with the individual one hour to several days, depending on what is needed.
What Can an Elderly Caregiver Do After CNA Training?
Elderly caregivers who have completed CNA training are usually called into a home to keep older individuals company when those individuals are still somewhat functional. The elderly will still be able to do most tasks by themselves, however, they will need help with a few daily chores. Here are some of the duties you may be expected to complete
- Grocery Shopping & Errands- Even though the individual may be able to walk around their home and do household tasks, they may not be able to drive anymore or stand for long periods at a time in the checkout line.
- Dispensing Medication – Although CNA training doesn’t generally cover medication dispensing for CNA’s, you may be asked to do so in an elderly companion situation.
- Laundry & Light House Cleaning- Loading the washer and dry and pushing a vacuum may not be a task your elderly individual is capable of.
- Meal Preparation- You may be expected to prepare breakfast, lunch, or supper for the elderly individual while the caregiver is away.
While it is possible to perform many of these tasks by yourself, and at times the elderly may not be able to help you with them, an important part of elderly companionship is involving them in the tasks. You can take them grocery shopping with you, have them rinse while you wash the dishes, allow them to help you fold the laundry, and involve them in preparing meals. Again, CNA training may not have taught you these skills. You’ll pick them up on your own, or through continuing education.
Another important part of elderly companionship is the company you will provide. This job involves taking the time to converse with the elderly, play cards or games, read to them, and help them with the hobbies they love, such as gardening.
Becoming an elderly companion after CNA training is a fulfilling and rewarding kind of employment. You not only keep them company while their primary caregiver is away, but also help them succeed at living on their own.
If you feel an elderly care companion may be right for you, start with CNA training and put yourself on the path to a new career.