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Nurses's Aide: The History and How to Become One

Updated on February 22, 2013

In recent years, there has been a significant growth of young adults entering the healthcare field. This growth is due to money, personal interest, and the high demands for nurses, doctors, and nurses’ aides. I decided to become a nurses’ aide due to my own personal interest and my passion to help others. In the information to follow, I will speak about the history of nurses’ aides, explain what they are, how you can become a nurses’ aide, why I love working as one, and what you learn from working as a nurses’ aide.

In the early 1940’s, people began to work as nurses’ aides without formal training due to nurses’ demand for them during World War II. As the years passed by, the number of nurses’ aides grew to more than twelve thousand in the hospitals. According to, Congress examined long term care facilities realizing that there was a lack of training there that would lead to the spiral of safety and care of the residents. In the late 1980’s, the Omnibus Reconciliation Act was passed which requires education, training, and the completion of the state test before receiving your nurses’ aides license.

Therefore, the increased education among the nurses’ aides allowed for the residents’ to maintain its quality of care and safety. The education that you need to become a nurses’ aide is to complete 75 to 100 hours of classroom and clinical training. This classroom training can be taken at a junior college or online. The clinical training may occur at a hospital and/or nursing home. This training allows you to know what you’re doing and to make sure whatever you’re doing is the correct way. Also, this training helps you to interact and understand the residents in many different ways.

Likewise, a nurses’ aide is a person, who has trained for hours in order to help those of need such as the elderly, children, adults, and the mentally/physically disabled. These nurses’ aides may work in any healthcare facility such as a nursing home, hospital, and homecare. The type of residents that the nurses’ aides work with depends on the facility and location. A nurses’ aide can work with people who are either independent, assisted living. Also a nurses’ aide can work with people who have Alzheimer’s or dementia, which are brain disease that generate the loss of brain function that is according to The general role of the nurses’ aide is to dress residents, help them shower, feed them, do their laundry, transfer them, take vital signs, brush their teeth, comb their hair, etc. These responsibilities of the nurses’ aides are vital in ensuring that each and every resident meets a high quality of care and safety.

In addition, I really enjoy working as a nurses’ aide. I feel that the smiles on the elderly faces and compliments really help me to appreciate my job and the things I accomplish. I’ve worked as a nurses’ aide for over two years now and I still feel the same way about my job. I love the fact that my day is never the say and that there is something constantly happening. For example, an elderly person might fall or one resident might tell another resident to shut up for no reason at all. It’s amazing. Also, I love the fact that you’re constantly rotated and work with many different residents and you get to understand their personalities and who they are.


Overall, I feel that you can learn a lot by becoming a nurses’ aide. You learn patience and how to communicate easily with the residents. In our books, communication opportunities, it talks about conclusion jumping which is assuming without reasoning for doing so. In the nursing field, conclusion jumping or assuming is avoiding due to the need to having to constantly ask questions to solve problems rather than using your own opinion. Basically, you have to make sure what you are thinking is correct because of the residents safety and care. Also, I feel that you can become humbled by the experience of taking care of another individual. Instead of thinking about yourself, you can think about someone who really needs to continue to live and to enjoy life to the best that they can. You can really make a difference in someone’s life other than your own.

Furthermore, I feel that everyone here should try to get involved as much as possible in the community. I feel this way because I think you will learn to be a better communicator with people and because you might gain self-fulfillment as I do when I work with the elderly. You can get involved by volunteering at the mission, at the zoo helping with animals or helping to pass candy during Halloween. Also, you can get involved by volunteering to help out at hospitals and nursing homes with the residents, in order to gain some experience with helping someone else to live an easier life.

In conclusion, nurses’ aides are people who have been trained to take care of the elderly that range from independent and assisted living to people with Alzheimer’s and dementia. These nurses’ aides can work in any healthcare facility such as a nursing home, hospital, and/or homecare. The work that the nurses’ aides carry out helps the residents to live an easier life and to reach an overall high quality of care. The reason why I love working as a nurses’ aide is due to the smiles and compliments I receive from the residents for helping them with something that they can’t do themselves. Also, since my day is never the same and is always changing due to a resident falling or a senseless argument. I’ve learned how to be a better communicator and to never assume but to ask questions whenever I need help due to the fact that I’m dealing with someone else’s life rather than my own. The best way to get involved is to volunteer at a nursing home or local hospital. Volunteering may open your eyes to someone else appreciating or complimenting you because your decision to set aside your time for someone else. This could lead you to realizing that there are people out there who need help and you might be that one person who can help them.


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    • torrilynn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      @Jools99 thanks for the feedback and for finding my hub interesting

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools Hogg 

      6 years ago from North-East UK

      Very interesting hub. I think that there is definitely a rise in this role in my country too and I admire all of those who go into this vocational field; it is very hard work!

    • torrilynn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      @PhyllisDoyle you are more than welcome and i thank you for commenting on my hub. I always disliked working first shift due to the faster pace and the loads of work that you would have to do. Ive always preferred second shift and i've sometimes considered working third shift. i loved working with the elderly and helping them to smile and enjoy their day despite having to now live in a room instead of a regular house.

    • Phyllis Doyle profile image

      Phyllis Doyle Burns 

      6 years ago from High desert of Nevada.

      torrilynn, boy, did this hub of yours bring back memories. When I was in high school, I worked as a nurse's aid on the graveyard shift at a convalescent hospital. It was really an end-of-life facility for the elderly. Being on the graveyard shift was something that no one wanted to do -- yet I learned so much about life and spirituality by tending to the elderly during the night. I often sat with a patient who had awoken from a bad dream and was frightened. I talked with them or read to them till they fell asleep again. I often sat with those who were dying, held their hands and prayed with and for them. I would not change one minute of that job -- it was very hard work, but, so rewarding. Being a nurse's aid gave me so much in return.

      Thank you for sharing your experience and the rewards of being a nurse's aid. I have much admiration for you for working with others in a healing way.

    • torrilynn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago


      thank you so much and ye i love my job dearly idk what i would do if i couldn't work as a CNA helping the elderly and helping them to live out the remainder of their years in a positive way.

    • torrilynn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      @DDE i completely agree as long as your doing something you love you will never have to work a day in your life

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      6 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      A well thought of, do what you enjoy and life can be much easier.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Bless you and everyone like you who not only works as a nurse's aide, but who loves their job and takes good and loving care of patients. It is a job that is much needed and will continue to always serve a need. Up and useful votes.

    • torrilynn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      @GypsyRoseLee your welcome and I'm glad that you found my hub interesting and worth reading. Im happy that your passing this on as well. Thanks.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      6 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Thanks for sharing this interesting and informative hub. Being a nurses aid sounds like a fascinating job which can help a lot of different people. Passing this on.

    • torrilynn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      @aviannovice thanks i am proud of what I do and helping others really does help me to feel good on the inside.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      6 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      A great vocation, indeed. You should be proud of what you do, for you help many people in achieving a higher quality of life than they would have had without you. Good job!


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