With a population of nearly 13 million people, Pennsylvania hospitals and medical facilities find themselves in need of more nurses and nursing assistants. Some healthcare facilities are critically understaffed and need to hire trained help. People who are trained as certified nursing assistants (CNAs) are in a good position to meet the demand for help in the area. Aspiring Pennsylvania CNAs will need to complete background evaluations and meet the state’s requirements for training and tests. There are many places that offer CNA classes in Pennsylvania and that can assist interested candidates in finding work as a nursing assistant.
Pennsylvania CNA Certification Requirements
The requirements for training may vary slightly based on individual employers, but in general, the list of items below are required to be a CNA in Pennsylvania. Interested candidates need to complete a state-approved training program before they can take the CNA certification exam. They should also expect a background check and demonstrate that they have lived in the state for at least two years. It is also necessary to have a high school diploma or an equivalent. Some other requirements include:
- Criminal history records
- Be at least 16 years old (some places in the state may require an age of at least 18 years)
- Competency in math and English
- Pass a physical exam
- Proof of immunization of tetanus, mumps, measles, and rubella
- A negative two-step Mantoux
- The ability to stand for hours and lift at least 40 pounds
Information in your criminal history records may or may not disqualify some candidates.
Pennsylvania CNA Training and Testing Costs
Pennsylvania requires prospective candidates to graduate from a state-approved training program. CNAs need to have a license before receiving employment at healthcare establishments. There are about 130 programs across several Pennsylvania counties that can help prospective CNAs meet these requirements.
The costs of these programs can vary from $800 to $1,400. Some programs include class materials such as textbooks and uniforms as part of the program cost, but most programs do not. There are fees that must be paid for testing as well. The costs of testing vary; an oral and skills exam can cost up to $112, while the oral component on its own may cost only $32.
Free CNA Classes and Nurse Aide Training Courses in Pennsylvania
Prospective students and CNAs should look for training programs that would fit their schedule and goals. Some classes may require tuition fees and other classes may be free of charge. It is a good idea to contact the establishments directly to find answers to questions on cost or teaching methods. For more specifics on locations that provide free CNA training, follow this link. Below are some CNA classes in Pennsylvania that may be considered.
CNA Training in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
American Red Cross. The CNA training at the Red Cross in Philadelphia trains candidates to pass the certification exam. The program lasts for four weeks and is state-approved. The program includes a mandatory orientation, a reading test, a physical exam, and a two-step Mantoux. Tuition is $1300, including books and course material. Financial aid may also be available.
Holy Redeemer Health. This establishment offers CNA training with the Southeastern Chapter of the Red Cross. The training is given at St. Joseph’s Manor at Holy Redeemer. The training lasts for four weeks and involves clinical training where students give care to residents at the Manor. There may be opportunities for sponsorship for this training.
Prism Health Aide Training. This program offers affordable tuition and financial aid. There are flexible payment plans available to candidates who need extra help with the cost of tuition. Applicants to this program will have to pass the school’s entrance exam in order to enroll in the CNA training program. The training prepares the candidates for the certification exam and for CNA duties. It also offers employment to all candidates who successfully meet the requirements. The program lasts for five weeks.
CNA Training in Pittsburgh
HCR Manorcare. A job placement and training facility, HCR Manorcare is focused on developing your skills and finding you a job.
CNA Training in Harrisburg
Harrisburg Area Community College. The HACC CNA program includes 120 hours of class work and practical teaching. Attendance for the first 24 hours of class is required and candidates who miss class are disqualified. Students must buy their own uniforms, shoes, and socks. Textbooks are included with the tuition, and the program cost approximately $1098. A high school diploma or GED is not required but recommended. 88 and 78-hour CNA course tracks are offered at HACC.
TLC Institute. This CNA program provides 100 hours of teaching and hands-on exercises that can be completed in under thirteen days. Students are also prepared to pass the state exam. Remedial assistance is given to students who do not pass the test. Tuition is affordable and includes the textbook and documentation. For more information on the cost of tuition, contact the institute.
Additional Pennsylvania CNA Resources
If prospective candidates would like more information about earning their CNA license, it is a good idea to directly contact the Pennsylvania Nurse Aide Registry. That address is as follows:
Division of Nursing Care Facilities
Room 526, Health & Welfare Building
625 Forster Street
Harrisburg, PA 17120-0701
For other inquiries, call 1-800-852-0518.
Out of State CNAs
An out-of-state CNA may be employed in Pennsylvania as long as they are in good standing on the current registry. Applicants from out of state may need to submit the certification, an FBI background report, and any required fees.
The certification must be renewed every two years. In order to do this, candidates must work as paid CNAs for eight continuous hours and obtain 12 hours of in-service training since their previous renewal (or initial licensing).
How much does a CNA make in Pennsylvania?
CNA pay rates may vary. Some hourly wages for CNAs range from $15 to $20 per hour. The yearly estimate for a CNA salary is between $28,000 and $34,963.