How to Write a Great Nursing or Medical Assistant Resume

Writing a resume for a Nursing career or any kind of Medical Assistant position comes with its own unique set of challenges. Jobs in healthcare will require you to have a certain background, but they will also require you to be a certain kind of person. Not only must your resume accurately convey your professional potential, it must also reflect your ability to empathize with patients, families, and clinical colleagues. It has to show that you are committed and passionate about quality care and general health education.

First off, considering the special skills and expertise that are necessary to be a success in the field of healthcare, it is vital your resume dives into the specific details of your clinical experience. For instance, is the bulk of your background in Pediatrics, or Orthopedics? Mental Health, or Palliative Care? It may benefit you as an individual to make these distinctions and show potential employers that you are committed to a particular aspect of healthcare. Although, this is not universal. Some clinical positions will require you to be more of a “jack-of-all-trades”, in which case your resume should speak of your skills sets more generally. It really depends on what kinds of positions you plan on applying for. In this regard, I suggest you know your options and do your homework.

There are many options in the nursing field, depending on the level of education you plan for, what kind of certification you will pursue and if you decide to choose a nursing specialty. Some options include certified nursing assistant (CNA), nursing assistants-registered (NA/Rs), licensed practical nurse (LPN), licensed vocational nurse (LVN), registered nurse (RN), certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA), clinical nurse specialist (CNS), nurse practitioner (NP), certified nurse midwife (CNM) and registered professional nurse (RPN).

Most often, a person will settle into their clinical niche within a few years in the field. From there, one can take any number of professional development courses and specialized trainings in order to increase their knowledge and advance their career. Obviously, these certifications, licenses, etc. should all be mentioned within context in your resume. They will show potential employers that you are dedicated to progress and intend to further your vocational skills.

It is also very important to draw these certain distinctions because a CNA will have very different duties than an RN and will actually have to adopt a very different mindset. After all, working in hospice care varies greatly from the fast-paced ER environment and both types of jobs are suited for a specific kind of person. One who deals regularly with Alzheimer’s patients may not be prepared to deal with a gunshot wound victim in the ER, and vice versa. So the path you have chosen will automatically tell people a bit about the person you are, but it definitely helps to tell then as well as show them.

Whilst your “work experience” and “skills” sections will address your knowledge and background, you must also create an impression of your personality in your professional resume. I find that it helps to sprinkle in lines such as this throughout the resume (in context, of course): “Equipped to provide physical and emotional support to patients and families”. Amidst all the technical skills and medical jargon, I feel statements like this add an element of humanity to a resume and, if used tactfully, can be a very effective.

So, in summation, a successful Nursing or Medical Assistant resume will bring together these elements to paint a picture. However, what kind of picture will it paint? Do your homework, know your options, and show potential employers your personality as well as your professional skills. And, if you feel you are not capable to doing this yourself, I strongly recommend you speak with a professional resume writer to help guide you along. After all, your resume is your only chance to make a first impression – don’t take it lightly!


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