In the United States, when people become sick or have accidents, they may go to a variety of places to get better. Nursing assistants work in many of these health care settings.
Nursing assistants who work in a hospital work in a fast-paced setting. Patients in hospitals are often worried and have many questions. Nursing assistants give personal care and help improve communication between the registered nurses (RNs) and patients.
Hospitals are expensive. Hospitals often have to send patients home before they can go home independently. These patients go to a rehabilitation center. These are places with many doctors and physical therapists. The nursing assistants and doctors help patients adapt to their illness or injury.
Many home health agencies help elderly people. Nursing assistants work in a person’s home. An RN supervises the work, but nursing assistants work independently. They help people with personal care, fix their meals, and do other household work such as laundry.
Nursing assistants who like to make long-lasting relationships with people work in long-term care facilities. There are two types of long-term care facilities: nursing homes and assisted-living facilities. People who live in these places are called residents.
Residents that live in assisted-living facilities are more independent and live in apartments. Nursing assistants check up on residents’ health. Residents that live in nursing homes need 24-hour nursing care. Residents may need help with daily activities such as getting dressed or going to the bathroom. Nursing assistants work as part of a health care team and report to an RN.
Sometimes doctors diagnose people with a terminal illness. Some of these people will live the last weeks of their lives in hospice care. Nursing assistants provide care and assist the RN in helping to make the patient more comfortable. They also give emotional support to the patient and family.