Of all the different careers and that you can choose, the path to becoming a CNA is relatively straightforward, even though most people don’t understand it. It basically involves complying with simple regulations, taking your CNA classes, and then doing your state-level testing. Once you pass the state-level tests, then you can go out and search for a job. Sounds pretty simple, right? Well, obviously there are some nuances here and there, but that’s the basic idea. Let’s break down those steps a bit further.
To begin with, you’ll need to comply with some basic regulations such as being 18 years of age or older, being able to pass a background check, and making sure that you are current on your immunizations and aren’t infected with tuberculosis and certain other infections. These qualifications may vary from state to state, so it’s important to check with the state where you live to be sure that you’re taking the right steps to meet their regulations.
If you meet the preliminary qualifications, you can find a school that teaches CNA classes and register. After you complete your registration, you’ll typically be able to begin taking your classes. It is important to note that many institutions, especially today in 2016, offer the option of CNA certification classes online. By offering CNA classes online the institutions are able to cut costs, offer greater flexibility, and enroll more students. This is often a win-win for both the training center or school, as well as the nursing student. Once a CNA program is selected, then you will proceed with the training.
This training may last for a few months, depending upon how often you attend class, but it may last longer depending on the school and other factors. If you are someone who can only attend class on the weekends, it might take you longer to finish than someone who is able to attend class five nights per week. Some CNA programs may have more flexible options than others, and you’ll need to make sure you get all of the details about the programs that you’re interested in so you know that they fit your schedule.
After you complete both the classroom and hands-on portions of your classes, you may be ready to take your state exam. In most states there may be a two part exam which may include a written and physical skills test. The reason for the two part exam is that you’ll need to demonstrate some of your CNA skills to the examiner before you will be granted your license. They’ll want to make sure that you actually know how to perform the skills, and that you didn’t just study from a book or memorize text. In some states you may receive notification that you passed your test right away, and in other states, you may receive notification a few days or so after the test. Once you have passed your test you’ll typically be listed in the state nursing directory where potential employers can verify the status of your license. At this point, you’ll be ready to begin looking for a job because you’ll have finished the CNA certification process. One last thing to remember is that it’s always important that you check with your state to make sure that you’re completing the right steps because this process can be vary from state to state.