While developing your clinical skills during CNA training is essential, improving your bedside manner is just as important when you are a CNA. You need to be able to help your patient in whatever circumstance they are in, whether they are a nervous teenager, a new mother who is anxious about her little one, or a 30 year old man who is waiting to hear whether he has cancer. Your patients need to be able to trust you and provide you with the information you need to pass on to your supervisors so you and your team can provide them with the care they need.
Interpersonal skills are essential both during CNA training and after. While you are taking your CNA training, you will learn how to provide the best in bedside manner, but here is a little refresher course in case you have forgotten.
Bedside Manner After CNA Training
- Focus- Your job after CNA training may have you running in ten different directions at once, but when you are with a patient, do your best to give them your undivided attention. Don’t chart while they are talking to you, glance at your watch every five seconds, or answer your phone. Even if you can only give them five minutes of your times, make sure the entire five minutes is devoted to them.
- Listen- Listening involves more than hearing what your patient is telling you after CNA training. It also involves reading between the lines and understanding exactly what they are saying. Their questions and statements should not always be taken at face value, and it is important you understand what they mean so you can report it to your nurse or provide them with the care they need within your scope of practice.
- Privacy- In CNA training, the importance of privacy was drilled into you. You were taught that patients deserve privacy and how to make sure they received it. You were told to always close curtain, cover the patient, shut doors, close charts, and always make sure you never discuss patient information with anyone that does not need to know. After CNA training, however, you might have forgotten a few details because you have been so busy running from patient to patient, trying to care for everyone. Even if your patient isn’t shy about stripping down to show you where they are experiencing dry skin, their privacy is still essential, so take the time to make sure it is provided.
- Body Language- When you are caring for patients after CNA training, your bedside manner can be greatly affected by your body language. Make sure you avoid defensive postures, like crossing your arms, that you always maintain eye contact to show your patient you are listening, and don’t fidget with the hem of your scrub top. Keep your body relaxed, nod, and stand close to them, but don’t invade their “bubble” or personal space.
Improving Your Bedside Manner After CNA Training
If you want your patients to open up and trust you, you need to work on your bedside manner. Use these tips to guarantee improvement after CNA training.