Many people love being a CNA and view it as a goal unto itself. But others get their CNA as a stepping stone, the first rung on the ladder of healthcare success. Starting with your CNA certification gives you valuable experience, helps you get to work quickly, and allows you to understand healthcare from various backgrounds. These are invaluable benefits as you progress in the healthcare field.
So what other jobs can you do with a CNA certification? Most other jobs will require additional training or certification, but your employer may be willing to help cover tuition and other education costs. If you want to move up the healthcare profession ladder, consider these other jobs you can do with a CNA certification.
From CNA to LVN or CNA to LPN
Did you know that the biggest difference between an LVN and an LPN is the name? LVN is the term used in California and Texas, while LPN is the term used in the rest of the United States. LPNs work under the direction of RNs and doctors. They are more involved in the medical care of their patients than CNAs. As an LVN or LPN, you will be responsible for injections, dressings, vital signs, monitoring patients, and managing CNAs. LVNs and LPNs make between $24,000-48,000 per year and must complete a state-certified program and pass the NCLEX-PN, the licensing exam.
From CNA to RN
Many CNAs use the LVN or LPN position as a stepping stone between CNA and RN; others go straight back to school to become an RN. RNs work in all areas of healthcare, addressing the medical needs of a wide array of patients. They administer medication, keep records, monitor patients, and educate patients and families. The average RN in the US makes $67,930 per year. They must complete additional schoolwork and pass the licensing exam, the NCLEX-RN.
From CNA to Healthcare Management
Once you have attained your RN, you will be able to become a nurse manager. If you don’t get your RN, you could consider gaining additional education to become a nursing home administrator or geriatric care manager. Both of these positions are licensed and have different education requirements depending on your state. Working in management requires less direct care of patients, but it does require excellent leadership skills and an ability to manage workflow for multiple people.
Regardless of the path you choose to take, a taking a CNA program and getting your certification is a great way to start gaining experience in the healthcare field quickly. Another benefit of starting as a CNA is that you can make sure that healthcare is really what you want to do before investing years of time and money into a lengthy education process. Enroll in a CNA course and get started on your career path.