What Does A Non-Certified Nursing Assistant Do In a Nursing Home or Assisted Living Facility?


Nursing homes and assisted living facilities are experiencing a surge in demand for nursing assistants to cope with the growing needs of elderly patients. However, what affects the demand vs. supply curve of healthcare workers is role clarity. A non-certified nursing assistant is one such role that’s evolving recently, but there’s also confusion about the duty. 

A non-certified nursing assistant works as an assistant to the director or charge nurse in offering patient treatment plans, conducting patient care assessments, documenting observations, guiding patients in their activities, and complying with the law. 

In this article, let’s look at the actual role of a non-certified nursing assistant, along with the scope and significance of such assistants at assisted facilities in the United States.

Role Of A Non-Certified Nursing Assistant 

The role of a non-certified nursing assistant can be categorized into three sections – assisting patients, adhering to the supervisor’s directions, and handling documentation.

Let’s look at each section in detail. 

1: Assisting patients

A non-certified nursing assistant is invariably responsible for addressing the mobility needs of patients. For instance, the assistant may be required to help a patient at the nursing home with walking, cleaning, bathing, and washing. 

Based upon the health condition of the patient, the assistant is expected to handle clinical statuses as well. For instance, the non-certified nursing assistant offers a high degree of care and acts as a medium of communication between the supervisor and the patient. 

2: Assisting supervisor 

According to the directions and requirements of the supervisor or nursing home in charge, the non-certified nursing assistant needs to participate in activities like patient care requirements, assessment, and management. The assistant also keeps an eye on the patient’s nutritional status to keep the manager or supervisor informed. 

In addition to routine activities, the assistant is encouraged to display an understanding of state and federal standards on patient management and healthcare functions. This allows the assistant to become more responsible and inclined toward the vision of the home. 

3: Managing documents

It’s commonly misconceived that non-certified nursing assistants can’t handle official documents or make changes to treatment plans. The reality is that these bridge the gap between patient and care provider with accurate statistics and observations. These assistants update documents regularly. 

The role sounds similar to that of a non-certified nursing assistant. However, non-certified nursing assistants work more in accordance with instructions due to a lack of certification or related training. Furthermore, they’re constantly monitored to ensure they’re eligible for consistent association with patients. 

The major downside of this role is that the non-certified nursing assistant works temporarily at a nursing home and is replaced by certified nursing assistants or encouraged to enhance their experience, skills, and certification. 

Prerequisites To Become A Non-Certified Nursing Assistant

A non-certified nursing assistant is expected to have completed at least a high school diploma or an equivalent degree. Prior knowledge of nursing services will be an added advantage. 

A non-certified nursing assistant doesn’t supervise any healthcare workers. Instead, the assistant reports to the nursing home supervisor or director.

Here are other skills expected from a non-certified nursing assistant:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Basic knowledge of patient care 
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Basic bookkeeping and record management skills 
  • Computer literacy (to manage documents)

How Much Does A Non-Certified Nursing Assistant Make 

A non-certified nursing assistant makes an average of 32,900 USD in the United States. In other words, the hourly wage is set to a minimum of 14 USD, and it increases based on experience and certification. 

According to statistics on Salary.com, non-certified nursing assistants are paid based on variables like the number of years in the field, educational background, skills, and certification. 

Like most healthcare jobs, this role includes social security, 401k, pension, time off, and disability allowances. 

How Long Can You Work As A CNA Without Certification

The average timeline permitted for CNAs to work without certification is 10–16 weeks. However, the timeline varies according to the state, and some states in the United States impose specific restrictions/requirements to become a CNA. 


Timeline for CNA to Work Without Certification (in weeks)


Specific to healthcare institution’s decision


16 weeks


8 weeks


16 weeks


16 weeks


16 weeks


Specific to healthcare institution’s decision

Final Thoughts 

Becoming a non-certified nursing assistant is still an option to kickstart a career in the healthcare industry and work at nursing homes. Perhaps being an assistant gives you the option to handle patients in dire need in nursing homes. Nevertheless, the assistant needs to be cautious about the regular development of knowledge and skills to sustain the industry.






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