Where Do Self-Employed Nursing Assistants Get Their Patients From?
Certified nursing assistants, who work for home health care agencies and nursing homes, enjoy the benefit of regular work but relatively low pay. This is because the patient pays the agency or nursing home for the CNA's services, and the CNA receives a small percentage of that rate as a salary.
Becoming a private duty CNA for hire can provide a win-win situation for the CNA and the patient; the patient pays a little bit less than she would to an agency for the service, but the CNA still earns more than the agency or nursing home would pay her as an employee.
Self-employed private-duty CNAs often place ads in local newspaper classified sections, especially in regions with high senior citizen populations; senior citizens are a segment of the population that still reads newspapers. Such classified ads may include the CNA's number years of experience, personal characteristics, such as friendly, loving, responsible, and a telephone number for seniors or family members to call. CNAs sometimes post fliers announcing their services on community bulletins, especially in organizations such as seniors centers.
Word of Mouth
Experienced CNAs with good reputations most often land independent contractor caregiver jobs from referrals, according to Caregiver.org. Such referrals often come from past clients or their families. A self-employed CNA also may get referrals from health care professionals with whom she has interacted in the past such as doctors, nurses and health care social workers. Volunteers and employees of organizations that interact with seniors routinely, such as meal delivery services and religious organizations, also can be a source for patient referrals.
CNAs get clients by adding information about their services to online caregiver database and their state registry of licensed CNAs. Such services allow those in search of caregivers to browse profiles of CNAs offering the exact type of services they need, such as Alzheimers or dementia care. CNAs also respond to online classified ads posted by family members who need caregivers for their loved ones.
Growing Your Business
To earn regular and sustainable income, you must present yourself in a professional manner to build client confidence in your services. Look professional when you report to clients' homes. This means wearing a clean uniform, nonslip shoes and name badge because some clients may have difficulty remembering your name. Speak to clients in a polite tone of voice and keep a daily patient log of your activities for family members to review and share with health care providers.
Even if you're self employed, for patient safety and long-term client satisfaction with your services, you must practice the care-giving standards you learned to earn your CNA license. CarePathways stresses the importance of carrying liability insurance in the event a patient is injured on your watch or you are accused of theft by a forgetful dementia patient who misplaces objects. A potential client may also be more inclined to hire you if you advertise that you're licensed and insured.
Maya Black has been covering business, food, travel, cultural topics and decorating since 1992. She has bachelor's degree in art and a master's degree in cultural studies from University of Texas, a culinary arts certificate and a real estate license. Her articles appear in magazines such as Virginia Living and Albemarle.