Every State in the USA has slightly different rules and criteria for passing CNA certification tests. Different states even have slightly different rules about when you are qualified to take the CNA certification exam. Because of the content of the exams is not exactly the same for each state, there is no “universal” certification across all the States. This means CNA certification earned in Texas, does not allow you to work as a CNA in Jersey.
Do You Have to Redo the CNA Course in a New State?
For many people who enroll in a CNA course, it is a period of working for little or no pay, because they are learning on the job. There is a lot of studying and preparation involved. While CNA’s in training accept this as one of their career milestones, it is not something they wish to repeat, should they move to a different State in America.
Some certified nursing aides panic when they realize that they cannot start working in a hospital or clinic immediately, after moving across the country. The prospect of redoing three months of training does not appeal to anyone, especially if doesn’t teach them any new skills, nor helps them earn more money.
Luckily, you don’t have to redo the CNA course, nor the CNA exam, to work in a new State. What must do, is a fair bit of phoning around and organizing, to get your qualification validated in your new home State. In most cases, it is best to contact the State Nursing Board. They can guide you through the specific steps, that are valid for your region.
Why You Need to Provide Information
Because of all the paperwork and record keeping involved, it is unreasonable to expect each hospital to have access to a National database containing all the qualifications and employment histories of every CNA in the country.
This is why the Nursing Board in your State will want you to provide your employment history and documentation concerning your CNA certification and any other courses you have done since working in the medical field. All this information must then be verified, before you can begin the certification application for your new home State.
All the experience you have gained before, gets taken into account, as well as any infringements, or bad reports from your previous employer are considered. If you have committed felonies, or have been abusive to patients since your initial CNA certification, you will have a lot of trouble getting new certification.
Prepare Before You Move
Do your inquiries before you move to a new State, so that you know what to expect, and you can get all the necessary papers and certification ready. This saves time and speeds up the transfer process. For States that allow you to transfer CNA certification, you need to in good standing with your previous State’s Nursing boar, and be listed as “Active”. This means you have to work for a certain number of paid hours per year, to be classified as an active CNA. Some States do not have streamlined application processes, so either prepare in advance, as best you can, or make sure you have another source of income for a while.
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