April 20, 2014

Why should you become a certified nursing assistant and what is the average CNA salary in the U.S?

certified nursing assistant salary

Why many people are choosing a career as a CNA

The job of a certified nursing assistant is becoming more and more popular day by day. Since not much training is required to become a nurse assistant in the United States, many are looking forward to a career as a nursing assistant. Due to this huge demand for such a job, lots of schools have emerged that train these aspiring nurse aides. Even though you do not need much training to become a nurse assistant, the salary that you receive is considerably very good. Apart from a decent remuneration, you also get benefits such as paid holidays and flexible working hours.

How do you become a certified nursing assistant?

There are some really good schools across the country that provides quality CNA training. You can enroll for these courses or if you think that you cannot afford the CNA classes of these premiere institutions then you can easily go for other nursing programs that are available. Once you have completed such a course, you have to take the state sponsored qualifying test. After doing so, you get your CNA certification and you get the opportunity to practice your profession in that particular state. Even if you fail to qualify, you can retake the test again.

Availability of CNA jobs with a decent pay

What does a CNA basically have to do? The certified nursing assistant description of job consists of the various responsibilities that ensure the all round health and hygiene of the patient. They have to regularly monitor the patients and make sure that they are doing fine. Helping them eat, bathe, change, etc. falls as one of the duties. The nursing assistant description of job also includes cleaning the patient’s room and changing their bed linens. They have to clean the bed pans of really sick, bed ridden patients as well. So, as you can imagine, doing all these duties becomes extremely taxing. However, the professional must never lose his/her composure.

How much can you earn when you become a nursing assistant

You must be thinking, what is a CNA nurse’s salary? Though it differs from one state to another, on an average you can expect to earn roughly $29,000. There are others ways on how to increase this salary figure. You can take up extra shifts to earn extra income. You can also look for certain jobs that pay more, such as private duty CNA jobs. You can even think about getting a job outside the city as these jobs generally pay more. A brief description of the nurse salary by state is provided below.

The various job opportunities of a CNA and their respective pay packets

In the state of NY (New York), the average certified nursing assistant salary is around $34,000 annually. Now, this is a very healthy figure as compared to the average figure. However, even though the wage is comparatively high here, so are the living costs. The nurse assistant salary in Texas is approximately $27,000 per annum. Coming to California, the prevailing CNA pay rate here amounts to around $32,000 yearly.

How CNA salaries differ from one state to another in the US?

In the state of Florida, the nurse’s aide salary is approximately $28,000 per year. Some people who have slightly high paying job can expect to earn around $30,000 also. The nursing assistant pay in Maine is somewhere around $28,000 also. In Maryland (MD), the CNA annual salary is $30,000. Again, some of them earn up to $32,000 as well. The CNA jobs salary yields a decent figure of $30,000 in the city of Los Angeles. Again, the living costs here are high as well. Coming to NJ (New Jersey), the CNA starting salary here is approximately $27,000 annually and can rise up to $35,000. The average figure here is thus $31,000 annually.

The average CNA salary per year in Cincinnati, Ohio is around $26,000. This is a comparatively low figure given the salaries of other cities and states. In Arkansas, the average CNA pay scale lies between $28,000 and $30,000 per year. The figures here too are on the low side. The average income for a nurse assistant in Kentucky is also very low. The estimated figures suggest that it is around $26,000 per annum. The reason for such a low value is that there are not many hospitals here and another explanation is that the average income in general in this state is on the lower side.

Now, in the city of Chicago, the CNA salaries add up to an average figure of $31,000. The average figure of the state of Illinois however is lower. Thus, Chicago is one of the cities within this state where nurses can expect to earn a lot. Coming to Washington State, the CNA salary per hour is around $13.5. So, that adds up to around $27,000 yearly. This figure is below average however. The salary in New London, CT is extremely low at only $23,000 per year.

Now, we have seen some figures for certain states and cities in the United States. We can now compare these statistics with those of other countries. For example, in Canada, a nursing assistant on average earns about $32,000. However, the living costs are way too high and this barely covers all the costs. In fact CNA salaries in Canada pay 31% less than other jobs in this country. Thus, it is advisable to go to Canada having got your registered nurse license, as there are benefits of working as an RN here rather than a CNA.

Thus, we see the fluctuations in CNA pay that occurs moving from one state to another. However, even the lowest CNA salary paycheck is a lot when you realize the minimal training that is required to become one. If you wish to earn more, then you can easily get higher nursing degrees and become a licensed practical nurse or a registered nurse.

average income for a nurse

How to get a license in CNA?

You can get your license by sitting for an examination conducted by the state’s health department. You will have to sit for a written examination and a practical one. Once you have passed both, you will be given a license for 2 years.

How do I prepare for the license examination?

You can avail of CNA courses which would acquaint you with the various medical procedures and practical skills. Along with that, you will get study materials which would help you prepare for the written examination.

Is the examination very difficult?

No, the examination is not very difficult. The written test has multiple choice questions and the skills test checks your basic skills. The practical exam is more difficult than the written one. You have to perform each step correctly in order to pass.

What if I do not clear the examination?

If you fail to clear the license granting test, then you can sit for it two more times, after which you are not allowed.

What is the duration of the course?

The course duration of certified nursing assistance is anything between 3 and 6 weeks, including the theoretical and practical classes.

What are the scopes of further studies after completing a CNA?

After you become a CNA, you can study further to become licensed practical nurse or a registered nurse. This will help you become the head of the nursing staff at a hospital.

How long is my license valid?

Most states of the US have a 2 year validity of the CNA license, after which you have to ask the State Health Department for renewal.

How do I renew my license?

You have to file an application with the state’s health department. If you have worked as a CNA for 8 hours in two years, you will be eligible for renewal. The process takes around 2 to 3 weeks to be completed.