Texas CNA Skills (Part Fourteen): the Five-Surface Wash Cloth Method for Perineal Care

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Perineal care, commonly referred to as peri-care, is the routine care that nurses, nursing assistants and caregivers perform on clients’ genital areas and buttocks to maintain cleanliness, eliminate unpleasant odors, and reduce the microorganism count on this part of the body. Perineal care is a state-testable skill that might randomly appear on a candidate’s CNA state exam, so knowing how to do all steps properly is important.

It is crucial that nurse aides know how to perform perineal care correctly since the client’s perineal area has the potential of becoming infected if this skill is not done the right way. Proper perineal care promotes comfort, infection control, safety and privacy. When performing this skill, always provide for the client’s privacy and wipe from front to back to avoid introducing germs from the anus and buttocks into the urinary tract.

Since the client’s comfort should be kept in mind throughout the procedure, be very gentle and careful when performing perineal care because this part of the body can be extremely sensitive to extremes in touch and temperature. The necessary supplies to perform this skill include a pair of gloves, a wash basin, lukewarm water, soap, six wash cloths, two bath towels, and two bed protectors (also known as ‘chucks’).

To maintain cleanliness and prevent infections, take the extra time to use a new part of the wash cloth with each wipe to ensure that a clean area of the cloth is always being used. Legacy Healthcare Careers recommends the five-surface method for using wash cloths while providing perineal care at the CNA state test. If executed the right way, the five-surface method enables nurse aides to use five different parts of one wash cloth.

The five-surface method has a couple of benefits. First of all, it provides a clean part of the wash cloth for each wipe, and this is important for achieving a passing score on the perineal care skill at the CNA state exam. Second of all, it keeps the nurse aide from going through too many wash cloths, and this can be immensely helpful when working at a healthcare facility that experiences ongoing shortages of clean linens.

To use the five-surface method, get a wash cloth and fold it in half, then fold it in half a second time to end up with a smaller wash cloth. Thereafter, hold the wash cloth with the four corners pointed upward. Use the first corner of the wash cloth to wipe one area. Then fold the first corner downward and wipe another area with the second corner. Continue to fold each corner until the back of the wash cloth, which will be used as the fifth wiping surface, is reached.

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In essence, the five-surface method purposely involves use of five different parts of the wash cloth for wiping the client while performing perineal care:

  • the first corner
  • the second corner
  • the third corner
  • the fourth corner
  • The back of the wash cloth

REFERENCES

Tanner, D. (2019). How to Give Perineal Care. Retrieved April 28, 2019, from https://www.caregiverology.com/perineal-care.html

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Scholastic Spotlight: the Art of Taking Notes

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We know. It is a widely known fact that not all pupils enjoy the tasks of writing or taking notes. To some students, writing and note-taking are tedious activities they would simply prefer to not do at all. On the other hand, note-taking is one of the most crucial actions students can take to promote their own active learning. This rings especially true for those enrolled in healthcare training programs and health science coursework.

Alas, a multitude of convincing reasons exist for the sheer importance of taking notes in school. Thus, for the sake of time, only the most significant rationale will be pointed out here: taking good quality notes tends to help students remember and recall important material that they would have otherwise forgotten. Recall and remembrance of crucial material is very essential when studying for quizzes, tests and the state exam.

To reiterate that point, taking notes is a really important task. This fact has already been established. However, taking notes correctly and efficiently is not always as simple a task as it appears to be on the surface. Good, effective note-taking does not just call upon students to write down every word the instructor or professor says in a haphazard way. In fact, effectual note-taking entails capturing main ideas in the student’s own words.

One recurrent theme most good students share is the fact that they adhere to a specific way of taking notes in class. A specific note-taking style assists students to focus and organize prior to class; in addition, it helps them effectively review and recall crucial concepts long after class has ended. Adhering to one note-taking style and sticking with it will help students pay attention during class while capturing important information.

Sticking to one specific style of taking notes has an array of other study-related benefits, too. For some students, it bestows more than enough motivation upon them to stay attuned to class discussions, pay close attention and participate in an active manner. It helps students reword their notes effectively so they do not lose focus of the main concepts and ideas once they start studying for final exams.

The following list provides an overview of the different styles of taking notes in school settings. It is advised to pick one method and try to stick with it unless another style of note-taking seems more suitable for the topic of study. Of course, now that this information is out here, students may take it and utilize it as they wish. Students are also totally free to avoid using any of this information at their own peril).

  • Flow-Based Note Taking Style: a way of taking notes in which the pupil writes down the main concepts instead of verbatim paragraphs and sentences. The student connects the written notes and concepts by drawing arrows, boxes and diagrams to link them together as interrelated ideas.
  • The Cornell Note Taking Style: a method of taking notes that organizes class topics of discussion into easily memorable summaries. This style works since the main concepts and summaries are all written in one place. In the Cornell Method, the note paper is divided into 3 sections: a 2.5” margin to the left, a 2” summary section on the bottom, and a main 6” in-class note section.
  • The Bullet Point Style: this is a method of taking notes that involves simply jotting down each noteworthy detail as a bullet point sentence. This style of note-taking works particularly wonderful for capturing important points in class discussions that are moving along quickly, as wells as fast-paced lectures that are filled with a great deal of information.
  • The Outline Style: this method is, in all likelihood, the most popular way to take notes in schools. This style of note-taking involves an outline to organize the noted material in a structured, logical manner that forms somewhat of a skeleton of the textbook chapter or lecture subject and serves as a wondrous study guide when preparing for tests (Missouri State University, n.d.).

REFERENCES

Missouri State University. (n.d.). Outlining Method for Note Taking. Retrieved March 16, 2019, from https://www.missouristate.edu/assets/busadv/p.24.pdf

Scholastic Spotlight: a Description of Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) for CNAs

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Activities of daily living, most commonly represented by the acronym ‘ADLs,’ consist of the everyday actions that revolve around the provision of the most fundamental self-care activities for one’s own body. The main ADLs include seemingly simple tasks such as bathing, eating, dressing, mobility, toileting (continence), grooming (personal hygiene), and transferring (ambulation).

Even though the aforementioned ADLs seem fairly simple for a healthy person to carry out, they can pose a number of uphill battles for many clients and residents in medical settings. Workplaces such as hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, personal care group homes, and clients’ private residences are full of patients who cannot do their own ADLS due to weakness, immobility, cognitive impairment and/or long term illness.

For example, a male patient whose entire left side of the body is very weak due to an old stroke might have extreme difficulty getting himself dressed. This same patient may really struggle to transfer himself from the bed to the wheelchair. There’s a good chance he probably has issues with mobility. He might also need assistance with other activities like eating, showers, personal hygiene, and going to the restroom.

Furthermore, a client’s general ability to complete ADLs is affected by a number of differing factors. These can include cognition, motor skills, physical abilities, and overall functional status. A person’s functional status is defined as one’s ability to accomplish tasks that are imperative for living. Factors such as confusion, dementia, debility, weakness, deconditioning and prolonged immobility affect ADL performance.

Functional status is a very important concept in healthcare because it is one of those defining things that dictates whether or not an elder will require daily caregiving and assistance with ADLs. For elders in the community, their level of functional status will determine whether or not they are placed in a nursing home or assisted living facility. Functional status is also a good predictor of morbidity (illness) and mortality (death).

Of course, anyone who is enrolled in a nurse aide training program has probably been taught that one of the CNA’s most crucial roles in the workplace is to help patients and residents complete ADLs. In fact, the CNA is entrusted with knowing how to help their patients perform ADLs in an efficient manner while maintaining an environment of safety, cleanliness and privacy regardless of the setting.

Tasks such as feeding, mouth care, incontinent care, combing hair, showering, bathing, abiding by timed toileting programs, and pushing a resident’s wheelchair are all things CNAs do to assist clients with ADLs. This is consistently true whether a CNA works in a nursing home, hospital, group home, assisted living facility, or a private duty nursing case at a client’s personal residence.

Here are some rules of thumb when delivering assistance with ADLs. CNAs should ask the client about his or her preferences when providing care, as well as allow them to do as much as they reasonably can for themselves. Also, CNAs should praise their clients when they are cooperating or doing things the right way. Finally, a calm attitude of caring and empathy goes a long way in forming bonds of trust with patients.

Do not forget to call Legacy Healthcare Careers CNA School at (682)626-5266 to jump-start a fulfilling career in the healthcare sector as a nurse aide. The nurse aide classes offered by Legacy Healthcare Careers all include classroom instruction as well as hands-on training with real patients by way of clinical externships at local healthcare centers in the Dallas /Fort Worth metro area of Texas.

 

Positive Thoughts for Students Who Think They Cannot Do It (Part Two)

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Negativity is powerful enough to hold us back if we pay too much attention to it. In fact, negativity has the damaging power to crush some peoples’ hopes, dreams, goals and plans for brighter futures. With all of the negative vibes and poor normative cues that flood our day to day lives, it can be a monumental fight for even the strongest-willed individual to genuinely believe in one’s abilities to accomplish goals.

Nonetheless, much of the negativity comes from within. That pesky internal voice in our neural network of deepest thoughts shouts out to us louder than any other person ever could. However, positivity can cancel out the negativity. Having a strong belief in one’s own ability to get things done makes the difference. A positive outlook is of the essence because you must believe in yourself in order for others to believe in you.

In essence, take some time out of each day to nurture your soul with at least one positive affirmation. You should never be made to feel that you do not deserve success. Actually, you deserve to live the kind of life you want to live just as long as you are willing to devote the effort to achieve this. People should not feel that they are somehow faulty or undeserving of having the markers of a worthy existence. You are worth it!

The overriding message is to keep on trucking until you make enough progress to obtain the sort of changes you want to see. We can have virtually anything we want, and common sense prescribes that you will eventually get what you want. Conversely, it must be emphasized that you must change your inner thoughts in order to change your life. In other words, think positively. Talk positively. Live your life with positivity.

POSITIVE THOUGHT NUMBER FOUR: “I am a worthy person who has something good to offer.”

You, as a uniquely special human being, are worthy of giving and receiving. You have something decidedly special to offer to humankind, but only you know what it may be. You are worthy of receiving goodness, success, and all the fruits that come with the territory of these attributes. Realize that you are worthy and wholly deserving of the existence that has been bestowed upon you.

POSITIVE THOUGHT NUMBER FIVE: “I am thankful for all that I currently have in my life.”

Have an attitude of gratitude. You may think you presently have it bad, but others out there assuredly have it a hundred times worse. You might be complaining about your old shoes while someone out there has no feet. You might be complaining about your underachieving kids while parents in a developing country are grieving the loss of a young child that they could not afford to feed.

If all your basic needs of food and shelter are being met, be thankful and grateful for what you’ve got. Have some gratitude. Focus on what you currently have, as well as the things you would like to work toward. It is easier to focus on what you have rather than what you do not have.

 

Texas CNA Skills (Part Twelve): Understand the Patient Care Scenario!

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The CNA state test consists of  a written section as well as a hands-on clinical skills portion. The clinical skills section of the CNA state exam test is comprised of multiple procedural skills interwoven into a simulated patient care scenario that has been formulated to resemble situations nursing assistants aides normally encounter during the course of a shift at the workplace.

The clinical skills section of the CNA state test is administered in a simulated caregiving situation that will look almost exactly like the patient care environment in which most nursing assistants are expected to function. Unless specified otherwise, all the equipment and supplies a test taker needs during the clinical skills section of the CNA state test will be supplied by the testing site.

The skills section of the CNA state test will be designed to seem as realistic as possible. Also, the test taker will perform the hand-washing skill the on first instance it is needed in the test. However, after the first hand-washing demonstration, all other moments that require hand hygiene will only need to be verbalized. For instance, after performing foot care, the test taker would verbalize, “Now I would wash my hands.”

The patient care scenario will be typed on a sheet of paper or index card and handed to the test taker by the testing site evaluator. In most cases the testing site evaluator will read the scenario instructions to the test taker before the clinical skills section of the CNA state test is slated to begin.

The ‘patient’ who participates in the simulated patient care scenario is usually another test taker who has graciously volunteered to step into that role. In other words, test takers will perform hands-on skills on each other during the CNA state test. Test takers who volunteer to pose as a patient must adhere to a predetermined dress code.

However, instances do arise where performance of a procedural skill on a mannequin would be far more appropriate. For instance, if the scenario card involves an intimate skill such as perineal care or urinary catheter care, the test taker will demonstrate it on a mannequin rather than another person.

The following is an example of a simulated patient care scenario that is similar to what one would receive during the skills section of the CNA state test.

Sample Scenario 

Ms. Hernandez: Hand-washing / Manual Blood Pressure / Give Modified Bed Bath / Mouth Care / Position on Side

Ms. Hernandez is a 65-year-old long term resident of Curry Hills Nursing & Rehab Center who has hypertension and major depressive disorder. She has refused showers for the third day in a row due to her depressed mood. When you enter Ms. Hernandez’s room, you find her laying in bed. She is wearing a hospital gown, bra and underwear.

You will wash your hands and check Ms. Hernandez’s blood pressure manually before giving her a modified bed bath. You will perform oral care prior to positioning her on her side. You will leave Ms. Hernandez in a position of safety and comfort. You will document as needed while providing the care.

 

Informative YouTube Channel

A newer YouTube channel has been created! The YouTube channel for the Legacy Healthcare Careers Nursing Assistant School can be accessed by clicking here

Legacy Healthcare Careers’ very own YouTube channel contains a host of informative videos on different topics that pertain specifically to nursing assistants and aspiring CNAs. Some of these topics include the CNA state test, hands-on skills for nurse aides, written practice questions with answers, dress codes, and additional information that nursing assistants might be able to utilize in their daily practice as healthcare clinicians.

In summary, if you are an experienced CNA, current nurse aide student, direct care worker, caregiver, or perhaps just entertaining the idea of becoming a nursing assistant one day in the distant future, you may wish to visit our channel on YouTube to see if the assorted pearls of wisdom found within the short videos may be of benefit to you.

As always, prospective students in the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas should contact Legacy Healthcare Careers Nursing Assistant School to obtain quality, fast-track, affordable nurse aide training in as little as 7 days. Yes, you did read that last blurb correctly: Legacy Healthcare Careers offers a unique 1-week CNA program that could help you transition into a new healthcare career as a nursing assistant in just 7 days.

In the very near future, Legacy Healthcare Careers will also offer a brand new certified medication aide training program to prospective students in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area. The staff of Legacy Healthcare Careers is in the beginning phases of adhering to the multiple regulatory steps associated with the addition of the medication aide classes to the school’s current course offerings. More details will be added as the development of the certified medication aide training program reaches completion time.

Call (682)626-5266 to schedule an appointment time to enroll or visit the school’s website to submit an online application for enrollment at www.LegacyHealthcareCareers.com.

 

CNA State Examination Practice Questions (Part One)

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As nursing assistant students enrolled in a nurse aide training program, a number of steps exist that can be taken to promote mastery of the knowledge and skills needed to pass the CNA state test. A few of these steps include cultivating top-notch study habits that are conducive to one’s personal learning style, reviewing some material on a daily basis, and staying abreast of various tips and tricks to help answer the trickiest of practice test questions.

A diligent student engages in self-discovery to pinpoint the manner in which he or she learns most optimally. Even though a wide array of different theories exist regarding adult learning styles, it is best to simplify things by asserting that a pupil can be a visual learner, auditory learner, tactile learner, kinesthetic learner, or perhaps a combination of two or more learning styles.

It has also been said that repetition is the mother of all learning. Learning by repetition is a valid way of becoming proficient at answering knowledge-based questions. Simply put, the more a nurse aide student answers practice questions, the more prepared he or she will be at the testing center when answering the real exam questions on the knowledge (or oral) section of the CNA state test.

One proven way of boosting a skill proficiency or becoming competent at a task is to ensure that it is a stored routine in the consciousness of the learner. To make sure this process takes place, the most imperative first step is to elevate the skill to a conscious level whereby the nurse aide student deliberately ruminates over the activity, but not necessarily the desired skill itself.

In other words, the nurse aide student has full knowledge about the particular skill that he or she lacks (read: answering knowledge-based test questions) and, therefore, focuses on accomplishing the types of activities that will help him or her build the skill (e.g., reading, creating flashcards, repeatedly answering practice questions). This type of learning is what educators commonly refer to as learning by repetition.

To prepare adequately for the written knowledge section of the CNA state test, a nurse aide student should answer multiple practice questions each and every day. Click on the video below to see a handful of examples of the types of questions that will appear on the written portion of the CNA state test.