Colorado has attracted many seniors over the years that choose to retire in the state. The state receives on average of 300 days of sunshine a year. So many seniors flock to Colorado to take advantage of the sun and the Rocky Mountains. A large number of baby boomers will be reaching retirement age in the next ten years and this will send seniors to Colorado looking for an ideal place to live. More than 10.2 percent of the population is over 65 years of age. This influx in seniors translates into jobs for the nursing industry.
The state of Colorado has over 500 long term care facilities and this is expected to grow as Colorado seniors reach retirement age. This outlook provides any new certified nursing aides CNAs coming into health care a very bright outlook as far as job security.
Working in Colorado as a CNA in a large nursing home or long term care facility has its advantages as opposed to a home health care or hospital setting. Long term care facilities may provide better benefits and salary to nursing aides. Large long term care units have more than one nursing aid working which helps with the lifting, combative patients and client transfers. In addition to help, large long term care facilities are more likely to give you a pay increase for great job performance.
CNAs need 12 hours of in service education credits to maintain certification within the state of Colorado. As a whole long term care facilities will provide these credits for free.
Most long term care facilities try to keep shifts at an 8 hour clip because of the hours spent with patients as opposed to the hospital 12 hour shift. The work with patients can be intense in a long term care facility. In a typical facility, a CNA can expect to see at least 10 patients daily. This could increase if some one calls in sick or if the facility is under staffed.
Nursing aides working in a long term care facility can expect the pace to be fast and rewarding. Daily care might include bathing of patients, collecting laundry, tending to personal hygiene of patients, feeding, toileting, taking vitals, record keeping, and general medical issues. Other duties might include exercising, transport, or transferring a patient from a bed to a wheel chair. Duties all depend on what shift the CNA works.
Even though the benefits may be there, working in a long term care facility may not be for all CNAs. The number one complaint from nursing aides working in this type of environment is not enough time to complete their daily tasks. When a facility becomes over crowded, nursing aides end up prioritizing the jobs most important to keep their jobs. When this happens, patients then suffer. A CNA does not want to be in a position where patient contact is not a positive experience.
Regardless of the shift the CNA needs to be a compassionate person with good listening skills. The nursing aide at the long term facility has the most exposure to the patents compared to the other medical staff involved. The CNA becomes the face of the facility and that face determines the reputation of a facility. Good CNAs will make or break a long term care facility.