Each year, starting on the Thursday of the second full week of June, it is the time of year set aside to show our appreciation for the dedication and hard work Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) perform day in and day out. This year, these seven days of celebration begin June 17, 2021 and last until June 23, 2021.
A Brief History of the CNA Profession
Compared to the nursing profession, the CNA profession is relatively new. CNAs got their start during World War I when the American Red Cross launched a program called the Volunteer Nurses’ Service.
The Red Cross created this program to help overworked and overwrought U.S. Army nurses better treat the countless number of wounded American soldiers and civilians injured by war. The CNAs provided basic assistance in triage, acute care, field, base and civilian hospitals allowing nurses to concentrate on more specialized and advanced care for their patients.
Although mostly volunteers and not certified, this core set of women proved themselves time and again as tireless, unflinching advocates for the welfare of American soldiers. When WWII struck, the Red Cross reinstated the program and trained more than 12,000 nurse aides to assist in military hospitals.
The CNA Profession Today
In 1987, Congress passed the Omnibus Reconciliation Act to improve nursing home care. This act required nursing assistants to become certified through training and education in order to provide patients with high care standards. As a result, the CNA job market soared.
Today, nurse aides must take state-approved training and examinations to obtain certification, making CNAs a highly regarded, professional, and lucrative career. In fact, CNA employment growth rate is higher than average, at 21% from 2012 to 2022. Sound good? Learn how to become a CNA in Denver with free training.
Why We Celebrate National Nursing Assistant Week
National Nursing Assistant Week is one week out of the year where we can express gratitude to the men and women who work tirelessly year-round to attend to others. Employed by hospitals, families, doctors’ offices, nursing homes, and other health-care settings, these workers assist patients unable to care for themselves. So often, these care workers not only help with the daily requirements and tasks their patients can no longer perform themselves, but make a huge impact on their quality of life.
How to Celebrate National Nursing Assistant Week
Short on ideas? No worries! We’ve got you covered. From activity ideas to gift suggestions, here are some ways to celebrate CNAs during National Nursing Assistant Week.
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