If you’re a certified nursing assistant (CNA) who loves to travel and wants to experience different healthcare settings, you may want to consider becoming a traveling CNA. As a traveling CNA, you will work at multiple locations, interact with different patients and healthcare professionals, and receive a higher salary than traditional CNAs.
In this article, we will discuss the travel CNA salary, the duties of a traveling CNA, the benefits and drawbacks of being a traveling CNA, and how to become one.
what is a traveling cna and what Does a Traveling CNA Do?
A Traveling CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) is a healthcare professional who provides direct patient care on a temporary or contract basis, traveling to various healthcare facilities or patients’ homes to provide care. The duties of a traveling CNA may vary depending on the healthcare setting and the needs of the patients, but typically include:
- Assisting patients with daily living activities, such as bathing, grooming, and dressing.
- Administering medication and monitoring patients’ vital signs.
- Providing basic wound care, such as cleaning and dressing wounds.
- Assisting patients with mobility and transferring them to and from beds or wheelchairs.
- Recording and reporting changes in patients’ condition to a nurse or medical professional.
- Following safety protocols to ensure patients’ well-being.
- Helping patients with household tasks and chores.
- Being on-call to provide assistance to clients or patients as needed.
However, as a traveling CNA, you will also have the opportunity to work in different departments, learn new skills, and meet new people. This can broaden your healthcare knowledge, enhance your professional growth, and prepare you for a career in travel nursing or other healthcare professions.
Travel CNA Salary: How Much Does a Traveling CNA Make?
One of the main advantages of being a traveling CNA is the higher salary. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median hourly wage for CNAs in the United States is $14.26 per hour. However, a travel CNA salary usually starts between $13 and $15 per hour for a 40-hour workweek. This means that you can make up to $600 per week as a travel CNA.
The average salary for a traveling CNA in the United States is $53,923 per year. This is based on data from Indeed, ZipRecruiter, and Glassdoor. The salary range for traveling CNAs is typically between $33,000 and $62,500 per year. The exact salary you can expect to earn as a traveling CNA will depend on your experience, skills, and the location of your assignments.
Here are some factors that can affect your salary as a traveling CNA:
- Experience: The more experience you have as a CNA, the higher your salary is likely to be.
- Skills: If you have specialized skills, such as experience working with pediatric patients or patients with dementia, you can command a higher salary.
- Location: The cost of living in the area where you work can also affect your salary. For example, traveling CNAs who work in high-cost areas, such as New York City or San Francisco, can expect to earn higher salaries than those who work in lower-cost areas.
As a traveling CNA, you may also receive higher pay rates for overtime, weekends, and holidays. This can increase your income and help you save for future travel or career goals.
Is Being a Travel CNA Worth It?
While being a traveling CNA can offer a higher salary and unique experiences, it may not be suitable for everyone. Here are some benefits and drawbacks of being a travel CNA:
- Higher salary: As mentioned earlier, travel CNAs can earn a higher salary than traditional CNAs.
- Flexibility: Travel CNAs have more flexibility over their work schedules, locations, and specialties. You can choose when and where you want to work, and you can gain experience in different healthcare fields.
- Career growth: Being a travel CNA can prepare you for a career in travel nursing, nurse management, or other healthcare professions. You can also expand your healthcare knowledge, skills, and network.
- Travel opportunities: As a travel CNA, you can travel to different parts of the country or the world and experience different cultures, cuisines, and landscapes.
- Personal growth: Traveling can broaden your perspectives, enhance your problem-solving skills, and increase your self-confidence.
- Traveling: If you don’t enjoy traveling or being away from home, being a travel CNA may not be the best fit for you. You may have to spend long hours in a car, plane, or train, and adjust to different time zones, climates, and environments.
- Job instability: Being a travel CNA means that you may not have a stable job or work at the same location for a long time. You may have to adapt to different work cultures, policies
- Limited social life: Traveling can be fun, but it can also be lonely. As a travel CNA, you may not have the same support system or social life as you would have if you were living in one place. You may also have to miss important events or holidays with your family and friends.
- Lack of familiarity: Working in different healthcare settings can be challenging, especially if you’re not familiar with the policies, procedures, and equipment. You may also have to adjust to different patient populations and work with different healthcare professionals.
- Contractual obligations: Being a travel CNA means that you have to sign a contract with an agency or employer, which may have specific terms and conditions. You may also have to comply with different licensing and certification requirements, depending on the state or country you’re working in.
How to Become a Traveling CNA?
If you’re interested in becoming a traveling CNA, here are some steps you can take:
- Get certified as a CNA: To become a CNA, you have to complete a state-approved training program and pass a competency exam. You may also have to pass a criminal background check and a medical exam.
- Gain experience as a CNA: Before becoming a traveling CNA, you should have some experience working as a traditional CNA. This will help you develop your skills, network, and professionalism.
- Research travel CNA agencies: There are many travel CNA agencies that offer job opportunities and support for travel CNAs. You should research different agencies, compare their benefits and compensation, and read reviews from other travel CNAs.
- Apply for travel CNA jobs: Once you’ve found a travel CNA agency that meets your needs and goals, you can apply for travel CNA jobs. You should prepare your resume, cover letter, and references, and be ready to interview with the agency or employer.
- Meet licensing and certification requirements: Depending on the state or country you’re working in, you may have to meet specific licensing and certification requirements. You should research the requirements and ensure that you have the necessary credentials and documents.
- Pack your bags and start your adventure: Once you’ve secured a travel CNA job, it’s time to pack your bags and start your adventure. You should prepare for your travel, arrange your housing and transportation, and learn about your new healthcare setting and community.
Being a traveling CNA can be a rewarding and challenging career choice. It can offer higher pay, flexibility, career growth, travel opportunities, and personal growth. However, it can also involve traveling, job instability, limited social life, lack of familiarity, and contractual obligations.
If you’re interested in becoming a traveling CNA, you should research different agencies, compare their benefits and compensation, and weigh the pros and cons. You should also prepare for the job, meet the licensing and certification requirements, and embrace the adventure. With the right mindset, skills, and support, being a travel CNA can be a fulfilling and exciting career path.