At the HC-One family of care homes, we are committed to delivering the kindest care possible and we know that supporting our staff is the key to delivering the best for our residents.
One of the ways we support our staff is through our award-winning learning and development offer, which includes giving our senior carers the exciting opportunity to develop their careers by become nursing assistants.
One person who has already taken advantage of this offer is Mark Giddings, a nursing assistant at our Clarendon Hall care home in Grimsby. We asked him what it is like to make the move from care worker to nursing assistant.
What does a nursing assistant do?
A nursing assistant supports the nurse on a daily basis to help with providing resident care, person-centred care planning, and ensuring that care staff are supported.
How did you start your social care career?
I started by becoming a health care assistant on a cardiology ward in Peterborough. This led me to want to develop my skills further and to capture in both health and social care.
What attracted you to becoming a nursing assistant?
The role appealed because of the increased responsibility, the more challening thing of helping provide support to the nurses, but mainly it was to be able extend my skills as a senior carer.
Great! This is what you need to qualify for the development programme:
– S/NVQ Level III Health & Social Care (or working towards)
– Minimum of 2 years’ experience in health and social care
– Knowledge and understanding of person-centred care planning, and the relevant legislative and regulatory requirements
How did becoming a nursing assistant change your job?
Becoming a nursing assistant didn’t change my job, it enhanced it by giving me new skills, increasing my leadership abilities and working with the higher depending residents that are our nursing residents.
Are there pay and benefits advantages?
As with every progression in a career there is a pay increase but personally it’s about providing the kind of care that our clients need. Benefits include a new range of skills to enhance residents’ care and provide structure in our homes.
Tell me about a typical day…
On a typical day, I will check the abilities of staff members who are working and produce allocations alongside the nurse. It’s important to be able to prioritise your workload and tasks to achieve a balance between providing care and supporting the team.
A typical day starts with assisting residents with their medication. This gives a good opportunity to see the individuals that we are caring for, to help plan with them their daily routines and get them prepared for the day ahead. Doing this saves time later because we are with the individual and can plan daily activities while they are undertaking daily routines. All of this happens alongside supporting the care team.
What do you love about being a nursing assistant?
Being a nursing assistant has increased my ability to provide leadership and stability among the other colleagues within the home. The increased presence of well-trained senior team members has improved residents’ care and the availability of more support has led to increased time we can spend with the clients.
What do you want to do next?
Becoming a nursing assistant was my gateway to professional development, and my intention is to develop further into management. I am currently considering commencing a nurse training degree to assist with this.
Any advice for anyone thinking of becoming a nursing assistant?
If you are a senior carer who enjoys hard work and finds it rewarding to develop your skills for the benefit of residents then the nursing assistant role is for you. It will enhance your professional skills, extend your knowledge, and let you help support and develop staff, while also letting you provide the kind care to vulnerable individuals.