Final Secret to Passing the CNA Clinical Exam Part 2
Corrections are your friend!
- Follow the Care Plan – EXACTLY
- Don’t touch the patient until you have washed your hands
- Follow the Principles for every skill – IMPORTANT
- The test is really about the patient
- Make corrections as soon as you realize you made a mistake
In our last blog, we learned that when you FORGET a step, you should tell the PATIENT, and then DO that step. That way the evaluator sees you perform the action (to grade technique) and knows that you are aware that the step may be out of order. But more importantly, the patient is kept informed of what is being done with THEIR body.
The second type of correction has to do with the care plan. You will get your care plan right before your skills test begins. You will have time to read it and then you will put it somewhere that it won’t be in your way during the test. But you can go back and read it ANYTIME during the exam. I always suggest reading the care plan at the end of the skill again – to make sure you did everything the care plan told you to. So, if you read the care plan, then do your Opening, perform the Skill, do your Closing and finally re-read the care plan, you may be able to identify care plan mistakes.
For instance, let’s say you are performing Range of Motion to the Shoulder and re-read the care plan after the skill is done – only to find out you made a mistake and exercised the wrong arm – you need to address that. In this case, you would say, “Correction, I would have exercised the left shoulder, not the right.” Since the skill is over, and you demonstrated the actual exercises (just on the wrong arm), you will get credit for making a correction.
It is best to make corrections AS SOON AS you figure out that you need to. Don’t wait until the very end. Waiting until the end means that you might have to do much of the skill over in order to demonstrate a step that you missed. You might even forget by the end of the skill what actions you need to correct! Make your corrections as soon as possible.
In most cases, you will need to DO the step you missed or want to correct – verbal correction isn’t enough. So, if you wait until the very end (after you are all done with the skill and have washed your hands) to make a correction – and the evaluator needs to see that missed step actually being performed – you would have to start the skill over again. You are allowed to do that. You can start your skill over at any time. There is no penalty for starting over, but it will count against your overall skills timing. It’s always a good idea to make your corrections as soon as you realize you have made them.
So, now you have the 5 secrets to passing the CNA Clinical Exam…but there is so much more to know about the test! I still have to tell you the 5 main topics on the CNA Written Test, Show you the Testing Care Plans, explain how the skills categories work, go over what to do when you are a patient for another testing candidate and so much more!
But how about we meet back here next week for more information on skills timing and how starting over might cause you to lose points if you run out of time?
You are going to make a great CNA! I believe in you!
Until next week,
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