It is a wonderful and rewarding career move if you decide to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA). Perhaps you want to become a CNA because you think it is perfect for your cheerful and sociable personality. Perhaps you are kind and giving and would like to help those in need. Perhaps you desire the salary level and are comfortable with the working hours. No matter what the reason may be, you of course need to know first how to become a CNA. The procedures to become a CNA are not that difficult as long as you have all of the information that you need.
The needed requirements to become a CNA can easily be managed and you can enroll in CNA classes that are online or opt for more traditional CNA classes in your vicinity.
Ready to work as a CNA? Just attend CNA classes and pass the exam!
Step by step, found below is the description of the entire procedure to become a CNA.
Step 1: Take note of all of the requirements.
For you to become a CNA, you must first be able to meet some usual requirements. You do not have to worry, because a CNA is usually an entry-level position, so the requirements are easy enough to take care of.
While the actual requirements are different depending on the state you are residing in, they usually require you to be 18 years old and above (for some states, you can even be only 16 years old), a background check with fingerprinting, a high school diploma or GED, a passed drug test, a passed test for diseases like tuberculosis, hepatitis, etc., and proper immunizations.
To know the particular requirements for your state or even vicinity, please contact the office of professions, public health, or nurse licensing of your state.
If you satisfy all of the above requirements, you need to know more about how to become a CNA. Hence, next, you need to become certified as a CNA so you can already start working.
Step 2: Take traditional or online CNA Classes.
Step 2 in becoming a CNA is learning the required skills. In every state, it is compulsory that you qualify for an exam. This includes taking theory courses, doing lab work, and demonstrating supervised clinical training. This is an important requirement to become a CNA.
Obviously, this is a required step. You are required to take CNA classes so you can become certified and become a CNA.
Perhaps this is the most important lesson you have to learn when you are trying to become a CNA.
Although it may seem tedious to take CNA classes, they only take around 4 to 24 weeks. You can go through the entire process and become a CNA. In addition, within just a few weeks, you can have a job as well as a steady income stream.
A registered nurse (RN) takes years to train while a CNA only takes weeks in training!
Compared to an RN, you only need weeks to become a CNA. Previously, most persons who want to become a CNA have taken certification classes traditionally, which is in person. More currently, online classes have become much more prevalent.
Previously, only very few schools had online classes for people looking to become CNAs. At present, many organizations are also offering online classes.
However, right before you enroll, you have to double-check if the school of your choice has been accredited and approved for CNA classes within your state.
For instance, in California, a set of online classes are accepted. However, the same cannot be said for the state of New York. To make sure this does not happen to you, call the school directly before you enroll. This would only take five minutes and could save you tons of time and effort.
Online classes are good for you if you can only attend CNA classes during a set number of hours. In a way, you are not required to attend classes at fixed times. This is also good for people who are busy and for those who feel uncomfortable within a class setting.
Nonetheless, you will still need to go to school for your lab training. In addition, you will need to go to a nursing home, a hospital, or any approved location for your supervised clinical training.
You have to remember these as you choose your online CNA classes. Moreover, you have to ensure that you are near the locations wherein you have to demonstrate your in-person training before you enroll.
Nevertheless, if online classes are not for you, you can still go the traditional class route that will teach you to become a CNA. Just call the state office of professions, nursing licensing, or public health. They can give you a list of local and accredited schools that you can go to in your vicinity.
Step 3: Go and apply for the Certification Exam.
Once your CNA classes have been completed, you have to apply for the Certification Exam. You can accomplish this by looking for the testing agency in charge of the CNA exams in your state. This can vary from location to location, but there are more or less two big companies that are present in most states. One company is the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program or the NNAAP, which is present in twenty-three states. The other company is Prometric, which is in twelve states. If your state is not included, then you would have to check with the office of professions, nursing licensing, or public health in your state to figure out which testing agency gives the exam for you to become a CNA.
Once you are prepared to take your CNA exam, go to the website of the testing agency, and print out your application form.
As soon as you fill out your application form, you should send it with the payment to cover your testing charges. Afterwards, you will already be registered for your CNA test.
Step 4: Pass your CNA Certification Exam.
It is up to you to work hard in learning how to become a CNA. You already took your CNA classes either online or in person. Afterwards, you have already registered for the test and now the test day is here!
Your training and CNA classes have all been for your test day—all you need to do is to pass!
As soon as you have taken your CNA test, the facility that gives the test (whether NNAAP or Prometric) will grade your test results and give you a score from 0% to 100%. Once you pass, you will be given a certification and they will list your name and certification on the Nurse Aid Registry under your state.
If you receive a passing score, you should check the Nurse Aid Registry for your name. Employers seeking to find staff will utilize this registry to check if you are indeed certified and have all of the required qualifications and documents to work as a CNA. If, for one reason or another, you have not been listed as one of those who passed the exam, contact the testing agency and ask how the problem can be remedied.
Apparently, learning to become a CNA takes time and effort. However, at the end of it all, you will have finished something worthwhile.
In taking the training and classes to become a CNA, your new qualifications make you eligible for a completely new set of jobs. You can now begin making more money and at the same time help more people.
Congratulations to you, the new CNA!