If you have recently obtained your nursing assistant certification, it is important for you to know that your certification is not valid for life. CNA recertification occurs every two years. There are some things you must do to make certain that your certification does not expire or become invalid.
CNA recertification is not overly difficult. Every two years, you will have paperwork to complete. Some of the information will be completed by you and others will be completed by your employer. You should receive the application for recertification several weeks before it is due.
The application for recertification will be submitted to the State Board of Nursing. Any fees associated with CNA recertification are minimal. If you work for a nursing care facility (especially one that is Medicare certified), your employer might pay the fees for you.
Some certified nursing assistants only work on a part-time basis. In fact, some CNAs just work on a per diem basis. It is not necessary to work many hours to retain your certification. Most states will require that you work for at least 150 hours within a two year period in order to be able to apply for recertification. Some states might require you to put in a few more hours that that.
If you do not work 150 hours during the two-year period, there will be steps you must take to maintain your certification. The exact process will depend on the state where you live. The State Board of Nursing can help you determine what steps you must take to retain certification. Some states will require you to take a nursing assistant training program again while others might require you to sit for the nursing assistant exam again.
You must notify your employer immediately if you realize that you forgot to become recertified. Depending on the state where you live, you might be able to continue working for a few weeks while you obtain your new certification. Again, it will depend on the state where you live as to whether or not you will need to repeat training or the nursing assistant competency exam.
Some states will allow you to sit for the competency exam if your certification has expired. As long as you pass the exam, you will be able to renew your certification and continue working as a certified nursing assistant.
If you have just started a career as a certified nursing assistant, it is important to remember that you will need to complete continuing education credits each year. These credits will be necessary if you want to retain a valid certification. The courses will help to ensure that you always have the knowledge you need to provide excellent care to patients.
Some continuing education credits are offered online. There might be some training that must be taken at a local university or another local healthcare facility. Many employers offer in-service sessions to help nursing assistants and other healthcare providers complete their continuing education credits to retain an active certification.