How the Personal Experience of Nurses Helps to Care for the Elderly

Exclusively available on PapersOwl
Updated: Aug 17, 2023
Cite this
Date added
Pages:  5
Order Original Essay

How it works


This paper will discuss, analyze, and reflect on the different types of professions which involve aging. The first section of this paper will explore the top three commonly known careers that care for the elderly.

Need a custom essay on the same topic?
Give us your paper requirements, choose a writer and we’ll deliver the highest-quality essay!
Order now

These three main careers include a Certified Nursing Assistant, a Registered Nurse, and a Geriatric Social Worker. Following the descriptions of these careers, an interview was also organized. The professional who consented to being interviewed is Micah Gultom, 43. Micah has been living in Denver, Colorado, for almost 15 years and, in this busy and fast-paced Colorado town, Micah found an interest and love when it came to caring for the elderly. Through the examined careers and the conducted interview, this paper will examine the professions in the field of aging as well as their well-defined niche in the world of work, the national professional organizations they belong to, and the role of these organizations in enhancing the effectiveness of the gerontology professionals.

Exploration of Careers in Aging

The first career that was studied is the most commonly known, a Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA). “Gerontology workers have no formal gerontology education or training, even though they work directly with or on behalf of elderly clients or in an aging-specific organization or facility. They may work in paraprofessional roles such as certified nurse assistants in a nursing home or a receptionist for a county commission on aging.” (Grabinski, 2015) In many cases, CNAs are the main caregivers to elderly clients. Certified Nursing Assistants provide basic care and help with activities of daily living such as cleaning and bathing patients or residents, helping patients use the toilet and dress, turning, repositioning, and transferring patients between beds and wheelchairs, listening to and recording patients’ health concerns and reporting that information to nurses, measuring patients’ vital signs such as blood pressure and temperature, and serving meals and helping patients eat. (Zippia, 2018)

Nursing associates must finish a state-endorsed training program to qualify. Subsequent to finishing a state-approved training program, nurses take a competency exam. Passing this exam allows them to utilize state-specific titles. Nursing aides who have passed the competency exam are put on a state registry. Nursing aides must be on the state registry to work in a nursing home. (Zippia, 2018) Nursing homes and hospitals, regulated by the government, require CNAs to have a certain amount of training, obtain fingerprints, and continue a certain amount of hours per year for training. They need to be able to recognize choking, seizures, and other situations that require immediate attention. Because of this, the government requires these nurses to be updated on how to handle these situations in the best way possible every year. From personal experience, I have always known what a CNA was and their obligations to the clients. Many of my family members are CNAs. The most appealing part of this job is the amount of schooling required for it. However, even though less time in school sounds appealing, it could also deter from the number of jobs available to everyone. I believe the qualifications to be a Certified Nurse Assistant should be more stringent.

The next career is a Registered Nurse. Registered Nurses direct hands-on healthcare in an assortment of settings, including hospitals, medical offices, nursing homes, and various other facilities. They work with physicians and other members of the healthcare team to provide the most efficient treatment course. They also help educate patients and their families about medical issues. Registered Nurses who work at elderly care facilities specialize in geriatrics (Williams, 2017). They focus on both physical and mental ailments associated with aging. While some nurses have only general nursing training, others hold advanced degrees or certifications in geriatric nursing. The duties of a Registered Nurse in elderly care vary and might include tasks similar to a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) such as helping patients bathe, dress, get up and down, walk, and use wheelchairs or walkers. Like CNAs, RNs monitor patients’ conditions, assess their vital signs, note any physical or mental decline, and report back to the doctor (Williams, 2017). Also, they administer medications and other treatments and help patients manage common age-related conditions like incontinence, sleep disturbances, or mobility loss. Those interested in working as a Registered Nurse must have at least an associate degree in nursing or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Interestingly, Registered Nurses are ranked very high in the medical industry hierarchy. Despite having similar duties as a CNA, they remain in charge.

Finally, the last career is a Geriatric Social Worker. These professionals focus on working with adults aged 65 and above. They offer assistance to older adults and their families in addressing personal, social, and environmental challenges that come with aging. The main priority is to maintain and enhance the quality of life for older adult clients. Geriatric Social Workers offer families direct assistance by providing family-support services, recommending useful technologies, and facilitating the coordination of medical care (Liley, 2014). Most hold a Master’s Degree, and they often have field experience in geriatrics, gerontology, or social work with older adults. Additionally, many geriatric social workers offer counseling services. Common topics for these services include end-of-life issues, bereavement, and other concerns common to senior citizens. They guide families through the transition from home environment to long-term care, assist with filing necessary paperwork, and help access end-of-life care planning (Liley, 2014). I believe this work field is crucial for successful aging. Geriatric Social Workers make aging less difficult, empowering elderly individuals to believe they can continue to live long, active, and full lives, regardless of age.

Career Informational Interview

The first question asked in the interview with Micah was in regards to her own personal experience, interest, and motivation during the process of earning her certification to finally working in a geriatric care profession. Micah stated, “School would not be school if there was not a challenge every day.” Before Micah had her first child, both of her parents were already in hospice care. She mentioned how the health care in the Philippines was very limited, especially when it came to the aging population. “I was devastated. I remember always praying for my parents to stay alive and healthy until my first son was born. Unfortunately, they did not make it.” Traveling to America, Micah had always dreamt of providing a better life for herself and her own family while accomplishing the dreams and goals she had as a little girl.

Ironically, Micah had always wanted to be a nurse. “I never knew what kind of nurse I wanted to be, but I was always sure I was going to be one.” When Micah first lived in America, she immediately befriended a fellow geriatric who introduced her to the field of gerontology. She says she immediately got attached to the idea of the job because a part of it reminded her of her own parents. “At the time, I was willing to work my hardest to finish the education program and ace the exam.” The education program was stated to be between four and twelve weeks, which is then broken into contact hours and clinic practice. State-approved programs also are known to offer a minimum of 75 hours of classroom instruction and clinical training, she stated. Micah says that the educational part of becoming a CNA is very easy and quick. “The real work happens after you officially become a CNA,” she exclaims. She goes on to tell stories about the different personalities she deals with every day, from patients who are happy and content to other patients who are miserable and depressed.

“My favorite part about this job is to be able to spread happiness and hope to the individuals who are craving it. The hardest part I would say, is saying goodbye to a patient when you’re not ready to say goodbye. My strengths and weaknesses vary from being an optimistic person to a person who is too easily attached.” Micah believes that CNAs are crucial key points to the aging population. She says that organizations such as nursing homes are a lot more beneficial to society than they get credited for. “I truly love and appreciate the job I have. I believe that society tends to brush away and ignore the health care needed for most individuals who are in the aging population. Maybe it’s because of the fear of death or maybe it’s because of the lack of knowledge on how to care for the elderly, whatever it may be, I know that I would be content doing this for the rest of my life, in hopes of showing society as well as the elderly population the real truth about life and how beautiful it is.”

The deadline is too short to read someone else's essay
Hire a verified expert to write you a 100% Plagiarism-Free paper

Cite this page

How the Personal Experience of Nurses Helps to Care for the Elderly. (2022, Aug 23). Retrieved from