If you’re looking into a new career as a certified nursing assistant (CNA), Florida may be one of the best locations to consider. In addition to being one of the most populous states, the rising elderly population means that there are many positions available for newly-qualified CNAs. And as a resident of Florida, you’ll also be able to enjoy the vibrant culture and ample recreational opportunities of this dynamic state.
As is the case elsewhere in the country, local policies demand that all CNAs are educated and certified to the required standard: the Florida State Board of Nursing stipulates the expectations that must be met by anyone working in the profession and supervises the maintaining of these standards.
As a newcomer to the profession, these demands can be daunting but there are many facilities within the state of Florida that can support your goal of becoming a member of this in-demand profession. Read on to find out more about the certification requirements for CNAs in Florida and the resources that are available to you throughout the state.
Florida CNA Certification Requirements
There are no requirements to have completed a prescribed course of training before attempting the state exam. However, if you wish to enroll in one of the many classes that are available throughout the state to help with your preparations and do not possess a high-school diploma or GED, you may be required to complete a pre-admission evaluation to prove your academic competence.
- basic reading and comprehension skills
- minimum age of 17 years
- background screening for criminal record
- complete immunization records
- testing for tuberculosis and drug use
- physical examination
- ability to lift up to 40 pounds unaided
Florida CNA Training & Testing Costs
Training facilities throughout Florida provide comprehensive educational programs for prospective CNAs. These courses include both lectures and clinical practice that equip students with the complete range of skills that will be required by jobs at hospitals, clinics, and long-term care facilities.
Qualified staff offer training in basic anatomy, first aid and resuscitation, patient transfers and charting, and many other aspects of basic patient care. State regulations require CNA students to have completed a minimum of 120 hours of training — this is divided into 80 hours of lectures and practical laboratory work and 40 hours of supervised clinical experience.
In addition to these requirements, Florida regulations stipulate that CNAs must also complete 12 hours of ongoing professional training every year. This instruction should include appropriate subjects like medical law, domestic violence, and error prevention.
Over 300 training facilities around Florida provide instruction to CNAs in the practice of the profession and support them to pass state certification. The cost of these programs varies from institution to institution, but the average is approximately $500.
Your financial or personal circumstances may mean that you are eligible for assistance with the cost of training. Furthermore, if you are currently employed at a nursing facility or begin work within one year of completing training, you may be able to recover the costs through state reimbursement.
The following test fees apply:
- written and practical test — $140
- written test only — $35
- practical test only — $105
If the test is failed on 3 occasions, the candidate must complete a state-approved training course before it can be re-taken.
Find further information on CNA classes in the Florida area at the following link:
CNA Classes & Nurse Aide Training Courses in Florida
If you’re interested in pursuing CNA certification in Florida, take a look at the following list of training centers. The syllabus and structure of training courses varies from location to location, so contact an institution directly if you have any queries about their educational provision:
CNA Training in Jacksonville, FL
Acumen Medical Services
- This training facility distinguishes itself by its small class sizes and emphasis upon the acquisition of practical skills that you’ll need on the job. Since each class is limited to a maximum of 5 students, instructors are able to focus on each student’s individual needs and you’ll be able to complete all course requirements in as little as one week. The course costs $245 and included training materials.
- Affordable Training offers CNA educational programs that are approved by the Florida Board of Nursing. Their 4-week training course addresses all the key areas that you’d expect, including first aid and CPR, epilepsy, HIV, and some aspects of medical law. At $860, tuition is higher than at some other facilities but students benefit from small class sizes and an impressive student success rate.
A+ CNA Training
- At $225, tuition at A+ CNA Training is more affordable than higher-end institutions, but fees still include a pair of scrubs and a training manual. This institute offers a comprehensive educational package that fully addresses theoretical knowledge and leaves students with complete confidence in 21 key clinical skills that are essential to working practice.
CNA Training in Miami, FL
Florida Vocational Institute
- The well-balanced curriculum of the CNA program at the Florida Vocational Institute provides excellent preparation for success in the state exam and a later career. Students receive comprehensive instruction in the care, monitoring, and assistance of patients. Tuition includes 168 hours of instruction in both lectures and practical sessions. Fees are $780 for the 7-week program, but this includes books, materials, and other charges.
CNA Training in Tampa, FL
Tampa Bay CNA
- The 4-day CNA training program at Tampa Bay CNA is intentionally brief: this intensive course of study focuses on the practical skills you’ll need during your working day and ensures that upon completion of the program you’ll be fully prepared for the demands of the career. Unlike newer institutes that have a much shorter track-record, this facility has been in operation for over 12 years. The course is only $199 and includes training materials, instructor evaluation, and access to online library materials.
Additional Florida CNA resources
Contact the Certified Nursing Assistant Registry in Florida at the following address:
Certified Nursing Assistant Registry
Florida Board of Nursing
4052 Bald Cypress Way, BIN C13
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Phone: (850) 245-4125 OR (850) 245-4567
Out of State CNAs
Around the country, each state has its own policies on the eligibility of out-of-state CNAs to become locally licensed. Fortunately, in Florida out-of-state CNAs can apply for reciprocity which will allow their certification to be transferred.
In such cases, your out-of-state license must be valid if you wish to avoid the requirement to pass the state exam. Your CNA registration must also be in order at the registry of your home state. You will be required to undergo a Florida state background check which must be clear before transfer of your certification can take place.
Florida CNA Renewal
CNA certification expires after 2 years but can be renewed by providing proof of earnings in the past 2 years and attending 24 hours of in-service training.
How much does a CNA make in Florida?
The salary of a Certified Nursing Assistant varies according to factors like location and years of experience, but according to figures provided by salary.com the typical range of salaries is between $28,075 and $34,464.