June 19th is World Sickle Cell Awareness Day

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Were you aware that June 19th is World Sickle Cell Awareness Day? In fact, June 19th has been set aside as World Sickle Cell Awareness Day for more than a decade. Beginning in 2008, World Sickle Cell Awareness Day has been observed on a yearly basis in order to help boost the general public’s fund of knowledge and increase awareness of Sickle Cell Disease (SCD).

In addition, the World Sickle Cell Awareness Day observance brings some much needed attention to the painful, time-consuming battles that the afflicted people and their loved ones go through on a regular basis. SCD affects millions of individuals globally, including both adults and children. In the United States, nearly 100,000 individuals are afflicted with SCD.

SCD, the most prevalent form of a genetically inherited blood disorder that causes the shape of red blood cells to be abnormally crescent-shaped like a sickle, is a potentially lethal disease process. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), SCD is one of the leading causes of early death among children under the age of five in multiple African countries.

Healthy people who are not affected by SCD have normal, round, dome-shaped red blood cells that possess enough flexibility to move swiftly across small blood vessels without causing blockages. The abnormal hemoglobin that characterizes SCD leads to sickle ‘C’-shaped red blood cells. Sickle-shaped cells are inflexible and often become stuck in small blood vessels, resulting in occluded blood flow, blood clots, chronic pain and infections.

The blood clots that form in the bodies of people with SCD can lead to horrendous pain in many areas such as the hands, feet and trunk. The occluded blood flow can also result in damage to the bones, muscles and organs (WHO, 2017). SCD sufferers frequently have fatigue, weakness, tiredness and pallor. They sometimes seem to have a pale or ashen appearance and the whites of their eyes and skin often have a yellowish undertone.

To observe World Sickle Cell Awareness Day, people can use the hashtags #ConquerSCD!, #WorldSCDawarenessDay and #WorldSCDay to spread awareness about the burdens of sickle cell disease on social media outlets such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. People can also visit local a children’s hospital due to the reality they may encounter one or more chronically ill children who have been hospitalized because of SCD.

REFERENCES

World Health Organization. (2017). Sickle Cell Disease. Retrieved June 10, 2019, from https://www.afro.who.int/health-topics/sickle-cell-disease

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June 16th is Father’s Day

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Father’s Day 2019 is observed on Sunday, June 16th. Therefore, the members of staff at Legacy Healthcare Careers CNA School would like take a moment to warmly wish all dads a very happy Father’s Day. Fathers are vitally important because, without them, the healthcare field and society would not be in existence today.

Since the Father’s Day holiday has been set aside to recognize and celebrate the significant role that fathers play in the lives of their children and society as a whole, we wholeheartedly encourage people to honor all fathers on this special day. Happy Father’s Day to all dads. After all, fathers have earned this day.

Call (682)626-5266 to enroll in nurse aide (CNA) training classes at Legacy Healthcare Careers. You can become a nursing assistant in two weeks in Texas. Jump-start your legacy today.

2019 CNA Appreciation Week is Coming…

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Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Appreciation Week, also known as National Nurses Assistant Week, is a week-long observation that has been in existence since 1977. Traditionally, CNA Appreciation Week begins on the second Thursday of the second full week of June on a yearly basis. Also, CNA Appreciation Week is quickly approaching. This year, CNA Appreciation Week begins on June 13th and continues through the end of the day on June 20th.

The point of CNA Appreciation Week is to recognize the hard work, contributions, indispensability and positive impact that nursing assistants give to the healthcare industry. Many nurse aides work their magic without recognition. It has been said that CNAs are the tried and true backbones of the healthcare system in the US and around the world. Without the beneficial contributions that CNAs regularly make, the realm of direct patient care just would not be the same.

Therefore, employers, managers and others who routinely deal with CNAs should spend the next week giving the warmest thanks for all the unsung efforts and dedicated work during this unique time of the year. In addition, healthcare companies and facilities that utilize CNAs should express their profound gratitude by providing catered meals, gift bags, donuts, pastries, special tee shirts, chair massages, and other cool goodies that clearly convey “thank you” for a job well done.

Members of the general public can also display their genuine gratitude for all the wondrous things that nursing assistants do during National Nurses Assistant Week 2019. Here are some heartfelt actions that regular lay people can take to observe CNA Appreciation Week.

  1. Use the #NursingAssistantsWeek hashtag when posting on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other popular social media sharing platforms.
  2. Show some gratitude to the nursing assistants at local healthcare facilities with a greeting card or gift cards to a local restaurant or coffee shop.
  3. Encourage a young person or unemployed /underemployed person to enter the healthcare field by training to become a nursing assistant.
  4. Create a handmade poster comprised of “thank you” notes from friends, strangers, family members, neighbors, non-nursing coworkers and members of staff.

Train to become a nursing assistant (CNA) in only two short weeks in the DFW area of Texas at Legacy Healthcare Careers CNA School! Call (682)626-5266 and jump-start your legacy today.

June is Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month

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June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. In other words, the month of June is the perfect time of the year to show unwavering support for the millions of unfortunate sufferers globally who are afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease or another type of dementia. The month of June is also a prime time to acknowledge caregivers for the diligent work they do behind the scenes for those struggling with Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia.

According to the UCSF Memory and Aging Center (2019), dementia is a general term that describes any disease process that causes changes in memory skills and/or thinking skills that is severe enough to impair an individual’s daily functioning. Some aspects of daily functioning that can be profoundly affected by dementia include routine tasks such as driving, grocery shopping, managing household finances, maintaining employment, communication, and so forth.

In addition, multiple types of dementia are in existence. The most common type of dementia is Alzheimer’s dementia, better known as Alzheimer’s disease.  The part of the brain that contributes to the formation of new memories tends to be affected very early on in the Alzheimer’s dementia disease process, and this is one of the reasons why short-term memory loss is normally one of the first symptoms of Alzheimer’s (UCSF Memory and Aging Center, 2019).

Since June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month, what can people do to show their support for the millions of persons who suffer with dementia, as well as their brave caregivers? There are a number of actions people can take during the month of June to show support and spread awareness regarding the truly devastating Alzheimer’s disease epidemic. Some ideas to display steadfast support for dementia sufferers and their devoted caregivers have been listed below.

  1. Wear purple to show support for the themes and purpose that revolve around Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month. Purple is the official color.
  2. Offer to volunteer at a memory care center or nursing home that specializes in dementia and memory care issues. These residents often enjoy volunteers.
  3. Utilize the hashtags #EndAlzheimers and #EndAlz on social media outlets such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to spread awareness.
  4. Participate in a walk to end Alzheimer’s disease. These walks are organized and held in more than six hundred communities across the United States yearly.
  5. Discuss preventive and protective techniques. Measures such as regular exercise, healthy eating, low alcohol intake, ample rest, maintenance of good sleep/wake cycles, stress reduction, and social engagement are all excellent ways to potentially prevent Alzheimer’s disease and practice self care at the same time.
  6. Do not forget about the myriad of other health problems that have a detrimental impact on the brain. Illnesses that can negatively affect the brain, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol, need to be treated if present (UCSF Memory and Aging Center, 2019).

REFERENCES

UCSF Memory and Aging Center. (2019). Dementia & the Brain. Retrieved June 9, 2019, from https://memory.ucsf.edu/dementia-brain

Do you want an invigorating career as a paid, professional caregiver? Think about becoming a certified nursing assistant (CNA). Legacy Healthcare Careers offers two-week CNA training programs at their Mid Cities area school. Job placement assistance is available, so call (682)626-5266 to enroll.

The Top Skills Needed to Work in the Healthcare Field

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Healthcare is a huge, vast industry in the United States. In other words, the healthcare industry is bursting at the seams with plenty of job openings that need to be filled. Furthermore, the majority of these positions come with perks such as steady pay, fringe benefits, flexible shifts, cool coworkers, excitement, and an invigorating sense of purpose that can only be derived from giving of oneself to help other people make it through their days with big smiles.

In essence, the healthcare field has the capacity to provide extremely good employment opportunities to millions of people in the United States because it is so very enormous. Many people in this country require direct care and other indirect services related to healthcare. Nonetheless, there are a number of top skills that people should either possess or work hard to develop if they are considering a healthcare career.

The following is a list and description of the general skills that are needed in order to be successful in the healthcare industry on a long-term basis. Astute readers should take note that none of these are hands-on procedural skills. After all, a person can be excellent when it comes to performing medical procedures while being totally awful to the people who require those same procedures to be performed on them.

The Top Five Skills Individuals Need For a Career in the Healthcare Industry

  1. Service orientation is a skill that is totally necessary to survive as a healthcare worker on a long-term basis. Service orientation is defined as a mindset that calls upon a person to actively seek ways to provide assistance (a.k.a. service) to others. A major aspect of working in the healthcare field is ensuring the provision of assistance to patients, their families and others. In a nutshell, healthcare workers deliver services to people.
  2. Communication skills are absolutely imperative for working in the healthcare field. Communication skills include verbal communication, which is the act of speaking and voicing things to other people to get one’s points and information across in an effective manner. Communication skills also involve nonverbal communication, which is the act of using body language, gestures, tone of voice, facial expressions, shrugging, eye movement and posture to convey messages.
  3. Observation is the skill of paying attention to and analyzing the behaviors of oneself and others with the ultimate goal of improving or making corrections as needed. Healthcare workers must continually observe their own actions; also, they observe patients, coworkers, supervisors, families, vendors, visitors and an array of other people. Thus, healthcare workers need to have a keen sense of observation.
  4. Active listening skills are very important to have in the healthcare industry. Active listening skills are the series of deliberate actions people take so they will be able to devote complete attention to what other persons are saying. Some examples of active listening skills include taking the time to comprehend the points individuals are attempting to make, questioning others as needed to gain more clarity, and not interrupting conversations at improper times.
  5. Social awareness is crucial when dealing with people as a healthcare worker. Social awareness can be defined as the skill of comprehending and appropriately responding to the reactions of others and their interpersonal struggles, as well as knowing why they may be reacting in that manner. A socially aware healthcare worker remains fully aware of his or her surroundings and correctly interprets the emotions and actions of the multitude of persons that he or she has met.

If you are in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, get a healthcare career in as quickly as two weeks at Legacy Healthcare Careers. Train to become a nursing assistant (CNA). Call (682)626-5266 to register for CNA classes at our state-approved school.

Healthcare Career Spotlight: Psychiatric Aides

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Depending on the policies and customs of the specific facility, psychiatric aides are also known by a variety of other formal titles such as psychiatric nursing assistants, behavioral health aides, psychiatric nurse aides, mental health technicians and psychiatric orderlies. A psychiatric aide’s role involves providing assistance to patients with mental or behavioral health issues under the direct supervision of licensed nursing staff and/or physicians.

A psychiatric aide performs a wide assortment of workplace duties that may include provision of assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), facilitation of therapeutic group activities, responding to behavioral outbursts and/or catastrophic reactions, and transporting patients to and from examinations and treatments via wheelchair or stretcher. On occasion, psychiatric aides might restrain combative patients.

Psychiatric aides also conduct physical safety checks, measure and record vital signs, observe patients for harmful behavior, report changes in condition to nursing staff, serve meals as needed, participate in the admissions and discharge processes, obtain finger stick blood glucose readings on diabetic patients, disinfect rooms, maintain cleanliness of shared patient quarters, and provide emotional support to patients.

Psychiatric aides need to possess outstanding communication skills due to their very frequent encounters with patients, visitors, nurses, physicians, counselors and other members of the multidisciplinary care team. In addition, psychiatric aides should have a nonjudgmental demeanor and the ability to remain calm in the presence of stressful situations and/or combative patients. Psychiatric aides must also be able to manage multiple tasks at once in busy environments.

To become a psychiatric aide, an interested candidate usually needs a minimum of a high school diploma or GED before completing on-the-job training to prepare for the workplace role. In many instances, certification as a nursing assistant (CNA) is desired or preferred for many psychiatric aide job positions. Psychiatric aides typically work at freestanding psychiatric hospitals, psychiatric wards contained within general acute care hospitals, and chemical dependency centers.

Are you interested in this healthcare career? Call Legacy Healthcare Careers at (682)626-5266 for healthcare career training in the DFW area of Texas.

Texas CNA Skills (Part Fifteen): Providing Foot Care

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The following list is a sequence of steps on the proper way to provide foot care to a client during the skills demonstration section of the CNA state examination. Keep in mind that test takers and candidates will be performing the foot care procedural skill on an actual person, not a mannequin.

  1. The candidate knocks on the door.
  2. The candidate identifies the resident.
  3. The candidate introduces himself or herself.
  4. The candidate explains that he or she is there to perform foot care.
  5. The candidate provides for privacy using a door, privacy screen or curtain.
  6. The candidate washes his or her hands.
  7. The candidate gathers the supplies needed to complete foot care.
  8. The candidate places the supplies on the over-bed table.
  9. The candidate places a barrier such as a bed protector or chuck pad on the floor.
  10. The candidate dons gloves.
  11. The candidate removes a sock from one foot and places it on the over-bed table.
  12. The candidate adds warm water to a bath basin.
  13. The candidate checks the water’s temperature with his or her wrist.
  14. The candidate directs the resident to check the water’s temperature with his/her finger or wrist before placing one entire foot in the bath basin.
  15. The candidate applies soap to one wash cloth and gets it lathered up and soapy.
  16. The candidate washes the entire foot, making sure to scrub between the toes.
  17. The candidate rinses the entire foot using another wash cloth with the rinse water from the bath basin, making sure to submerge the resident’s foot in the water.
  18. The candidate removes the resident’s foot.
  19. The candidate pats the foot dry, including the areas between the toes.
  20. The candidate applies a quarter-sized amount of lotion to his or gloved hands and warms it up by rubbing between both hands.
  21. The candidate applies lotion to the resident’s feet, making sure to avoid rubbing any lotion between the toes.
  22. The candidate must wipe away any excess lotion.
  23. The candidate cleans the resident’s area and removes the supplies.
  24. The candidate rinses the bath basin and dries it with a clean paper towel.
  25. The candidate places the bath basin and supplies in the appropriate area.
  26. The candidate places all dirty linens in the hamper and and throws away any trash that may have accumulated.
  27. The candidate removes his or her gloves and discards them.
  28. The candidate places the bed in the lowest position.
  29. The candidate places the call light or signaling device within reach.
  30. The candidate opens the door or privacy screen.
  31. The candidate asks the resident if anything else is needed before he or she leaves the room.
  32. The candidate washes his or her hands.
  33. The candidate documents the procedure and announces that the skill is complete.

CNAs Regularly Get Promoted in the Long Term Care Setting

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The title of this piece says it all: certified nursing assistants, better known as CNAs, are often promoted to specialized, supervisory or lower management positions in the long term care setting. The varied positions that CNAs are promoted to generally come with alluring perks such as increases in pay, daytime work hours, some authority, chances for career mobility, and more desirable job duties and responsibilities.

So, what types of promotions can CNAs in the long term nursing facility setting receive? CNAs who start their careers in the long term care setting can be promoted into the roles of staffing coordinator, restorative nursing assistant, medical records clerk, shower aide, and central supply manager. These roles all entail some degree of autonomy and require the CNA to be a motivated self-starter with an eagerness to learn new things.

CNAs Can Be Staffing Coordinators

Staffing coordinators are utilized by both hospitals and nursing homes to be responsible for the smooth coordination of schedules and staffing by making sure all shifts at a healthcare facility are covered with adequate numbers of staff members. They closely work alongside nurse managers and supervisors to predict staffing needs and ensure the projected numbers of staff members will be available to cover shifts.

CNAs Can Be Restorative Nursing Assistants

A restorative nursing assistant, often called a restorative nurse aide, is a multi-skilled allied healthcare worker who is trained in the provision of restorative care tasks to patients under the supervision of a licensed nurse. A restorative nursing assistant delivers interventions and implements multiple therapies to patients as delegated to them by the nurse who oversees the nursing facility’s restorative nursing program.

CNAs Can Be Medical Records Clerks

A medical records clerk, sometimes known as a medical records technician, works to ensure patients and residents have accurate medical records. Duties involve assembly, processing, maintenance and proper storage of medical records in accordance with medical, administrative and and regulatory mandates to render them easily accessible between healthcare providers, insurance companies, and the rest of the facility staff.

CNAs Can Be Central Supply Managers

In the long term care setting, central supply managers are tasked with purchasing and obtaining supplies that are needed for patient care such as gloves, personal protective equipment, scales, mechanical lifts, beds, linens, mattresses and other medical supplies. A central supply manager stays in constant contact with vendors and suppliers, adheres to administrative budgets, rents equipment, and checks pricing prior to placing orders.

CNAs Can Be Shower Aides

A shower aide is responsible for the task of providing showers and/or baths, as well as other routine grooming care, to specifically assigned residents in the nursing facility setting. Shower aides typically help residents with personal hygiene and grooming. In addition, they sometimes assist with other daily care tasks for residents. They ensure residents receive showers and/or baths in accordance with predetermined schedules.

Do you want to be promoted into one of these healthcare roles one day in the near future? Become a CNA by enrolling in one of Legacy Healthcare Careers’ two-week nurse aide (CNA) training programs. If you are in the DFW area of Texas, call (682)626-5266 to get started.

Where Can CNAs Find Jobs?

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Where Can CNAs Work?

Certified nursing assistants, also known as CNAs, have a wide variety of options as far as potential workplaces are concerned. The typical CNA has a number of choices for the type of place where he or she can put the culmination of hands-on skills, formal training and book knowledge to good use. Potential workplaces for CNAs include hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, home care, hospice, group homes and assisted living.

CNAs Can Work At Hospitals

Hospitals are common workplaces for CNAs. Hospitals can be split into two categories: general acute care hospitals and specialty hospitals. General acute care hospitals usually have multiple departments such as an emergency room, surgical suites, labor & delivery, postpartum, intensive care units, cardiac catheterization labs, telemetry, orthopedics, and medical-surgical floors.

Specialty hospitals usually admit inpatients who have a specific health condition or fall into a certain age range. The differing types of specialty hospitals include long term acute care (LTAC) hospitals, cancer treatment centers, psychiatric hospitals, post-acute rehabilitation hospitals, children’s hospitals, surgical hospitals, women’s hospitals, rural hospitals, and convalescent hospitals.

CNAs Can Work At Extended Care Nursing Facilities

Extended care nursing facilities, more commonly known as nursing homes, are by far the most typical workplaces for CNAs. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics has indicated that approximately 40% of nurse aides are working in nursing facilities. Extended care nursing facilities are places where the elderly, severely disabled patients, patients with serious illnesses, and others reside to receive care on a long term basis.

CNAs Can Work In Home Care

The nursing specialty of home care includes two distinct categories: home health and private duty. Home health companies regularly employ CNAs to perform basic nursing care and activities of daily living inside clients’ homes. Home health services are usually prescribed by a doctor based on a predetermined medical necessity and funded by Medicare, Medicaid or private health insurance.

Private duty is a type of care normally rendered in the home setting to aged persons or disabled clients who need assistance with activities of daily living. Private duty CNAs may help clients with tasks such as light housekeeping, meal preparation, activities of daily living and companionship. Private duty care is usually not covered by Medicare or Medicaid and, therefore, tends to be paid for by the client.

CNAs Can Work In Clinics

General practice clinics sometimes utilize CNAs since they can be very helpful to the day to day operations of these workplaces. Small clinics often have one or two physicians and perhaps a nurse practitioner or physicians assistant. These providers see many patients and must be freed up from having to do mundane tasks like answer phones, greet patients, and obtain weights and vital signs. CNAs can complete these routine tasks.

CNAs Can Work In Hospice

Hospice care, which is a type of care given to patients with terminal illness, can be provided in many settings such as the client’s home, a hospital, a nursing home, assisted living, or an inpatient hospice house. A CNA hospice job entails provision of end of life care, often at a hospital, other healthcare facility or inside the client’s residence. Hospice CNAs provide basic care and emotional support to clients and their families.

CNAs Can Work In Group Homes

Personal care group homes are small private facilities with fewer than 20 clients where personal care and meals are provided, and staff are available around the clock. CNAs are often employed by group homes to assist clients with activities of daily living such as bathing, meals, dressing, toileting, transfers, and grooming needs. CNAs also provide companionship in this type of workplace setting.

CNAs Can Work In Assisted Living

CNAs regularly work at assisted living facilities where they deliver basic care and assistance to residents. An assisted living facility is a type of center for clients who need assistance, but not as much help as would be provided by a nursing home. Assisted living facilities can have as few as 25 residents or as many as 200+ residents. Assisted living residents tend to live in their own apartments or units and share common areas.

Do you want to become a CNA? You can become a CNA in only two weeks at Legacy Healthcare Careers CNA School in the DFW area of Texas. Call (682)626-5266.

Healthcare Workplace Spotlight: Managing Difficult People

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No matter where we work, we will surely have encounters with difficult people. However, healthcare workplaces can be home to high-pressure environments that do not always bring out the very best in the individuals that work in them. Factors such as stress, snap decisions, illness, and organizational hierarchies can all contribute to disillusionment that may lead to difficult behaviors from some people.

Some healthcare workers might have the terrible misfortune of working with a condescending boss, control-freak supervisor, micromanaging chief nurse officer, whiny coworker, mean-spirited patients or their verbally abusive family members and visitors. Regrettably, these folks are all relatable characters that are intertwined in the day to day theatrics of the modern healthcare workplace.

Medical-oriented workplaces such as healthcare facilities can be intensely stressful, so it is not particularly shocking that this type of environment does not always bring out the most noble qualities in people. In addition, those who do work in the healthcare sector have probably experienced more than one instance in which the difficult conduct of coworkers or managers has resulted in hard feelings long after the offending event.

Without further delay, if a healthcare worker happens to have a coworker or boss who is horribly difficult to manage in the workplace, here is a list of tips to help cope with the situation.

  • Make sure you are not becoming part of the problem. It is okay to complain as long as you come up with solutions to the issues you complain about. However, be careful to avoid falling into the trap of becoming a whiny complainer.
  • Tactfully confront the difficult coworker. During the confrontation, state the facts without becoming overly emotional. Communicate as assertively as possible. Take care to not become aggressive or passive in this confrontation.
  •  Focus more on the behavior and less on the difficult person. In reality, people usually are not the core problem. In fact, their behaviors are the problem.
  • Be future-oriented. Do not dwell on past occurrences. Do not continually revisit a difficult coworker’s past. After all, difficult people cannot change the past. Rather, they can only make alterations to their future behaviors.
  • Manage your expectations of others. Ask yourself if your expectations are truly realistic. If your expectations of proper healthcare workplace decorum and behaviors are too lofty, you might need to adjust them accordingly.

Good luck to every healthcare worker who is dealing with the hot-button subject of difficult coworkers. Please be aware that you are not alone in the fight to manage peoples’ difficult behaviors and habits.

REFERENCES

Employee Development Systems. (2007). Dealing With Difficult People: Participant Workbook. Retrieved April 9, 2019, from http://www.employeedevelopmentsystems.com/media/pdfs/DealingWithDifficultPeople.pdf