If you are settled in the state of New Jersey, and want to practice as a nurse aide, you should undergo proper training for it and then take the proficiency test to get certified as a nurse aide. Getting CNA certification in New Jersey will let you apply jobs in several kinds of health care settings. You will be able to work in a hospital, long term care setting, or even a nursing home. Apart from having a steady income, you will also have great job satisfaction from this career.
How to achieve CNA certification in New Jersey
When you decide to get into this profession, the first thing that you should do is to search for schools and colleges that offer this program. These programs are offered in several community colleges, vocational and technical schools and even in long term care facilities.
Most of these colleges might have a process for short listing students before accepting them into their program.
They would ask you to show your current valid driving license or your social security number and also pass an entrance test, which would be aimed at checking your proficiency to communicate in English.
Another educational prerequisite for getting entry into a program is to have a high school diploma or an equivalent GED.
They would also ask you to submit a criminal background check and proof of your medical immunizations. Some of them might ask you to show a certificate to prove that you do not have a communicable disease like TB.
After you get enrolled into a training program, you should complete it and then take the certification exam.
This exam consists of two parts, the written test and the skills test. For the written test, you will have to answer several multiple choice questions that you will have to answer within a stipulated time.
For the skills test, you will have to demonstrate three skills out the five given skills. These five skills will be asked randomly out of all the skills taught to you during the training.
You will have to show at least the main steps involved during a particular procedure, otherwise marks will be cut and you will fail the skills test.
In order to clear your competency exam, you will have to pass both the written test as well as the skills test. This procedure is similar to that of CNA certification in New Hampshire.
Requirements for CNA certification New Jersey
If you wish to get certified as a nurse aide in this state in a long term care facility, then you should enroll yourself in a program that offers training of a minimum 90 hours.
Out of these 90 hours, 50 hours should be part of classroom instruction and the remaining 40 hours should be kept aside for clinical training.
If you wish to become a personal care assistant or a PCA, then you should get enrolled into a program that offers training for 85 hours, out of which 69 hours of training should be imparted in the classroom and the remaining 16 hours should be imparted in the form of clinical training.
Cost of CNA training program in New Jersey
Although the training programs in this state can cost hundreds of dollars, this does not deter the CNA aspirants from taking up courses. This is because the benefits after the course are far more than the initial investment.
Most of the courses cost less than $1000, but those who are unemployed or belong to the low income group, this can be a lot of money.
If you want to avail free training classes, you need to search facilities that provide you with free training and will employ you after the training is over. This will ensure that the cost of your training program is covered and you will have employment after the course is over.
However, most of these facilities will require you to sign an agreement with them in which you will have to show consent that you would work for them for a stipulated period of time and not leave them before that.
If you do so or do not complete your training program, you will have to reimburse the entire cost of the training program.
Renewal of CNA certification in New Jersey
After you get certified as a nurse in New Jersey, your certification will remain valid for the next 24 months from the date it was issued. You should have worked for at least 8 hours in the past 2 years to be eligible for re-certification.
Your services should have been for pay and should not have been offered as voluntary services.
Two to three months before your certification expires, you will get a renewal reminder from the Registry. Renew it before it lapses, or else you will need to retake the competency exam, and clear it to be placed on the Registry once again.
If you plan to relocate here from another state, you will need to get in touch with the CNA registry of your state and apply for endorsement as a proof that you have completed CNA training in this state.
Then apply for reciprocity in your current state. Fill out the criminal background investigation form and submit it along with your fingerprint cards. You shall have to go through a background check.
The job opportunities for CNAs in this state are expected to increase in the next decade, with the rise in the aging population. Apart from having a respectable job in the healthcare industry, you will get a decent pay package.
The average salary for a CNA in this state is about $27,000 per annul or $13 per hour. This too, is expected to grow with the increase in the jobs for qualified nurse aides in the state of New Jersey. Thus, if you like being a CNA, you are likely to get a good pay and growth prospects in the years to come.