How Do I Renew My CNA License If I Have Not Worked?

Recertifying as a CNA requires taking an exam if you haven't worked in the previous 2 years.
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Certified nursing assistant certificates need to be renewed every 2 years. The requirements for renewal vary slightly from state to state, as individual states are responsible for the licensing process, but largely include similar requirements, such as specific amounts of continuing education and specific hours of paid employment. For those who haven't completed these requirements, such as women who haven't worked in the previous 2 years, renewing your certification will include retaking the certification exam at a minimum.

Contact State Board

    Before you can go about the process of renewing your certification, you first must look at the requirements for your particular state. Go to your state's nursing licensing website, which will likely list the requirements for recertifying for those who haven't been working. Otherwise, follow the instructions on the site to contact licensing officials and ask them directly. In many cases, all you need to do is pass the certification exam again and submit your paperwork as normal. However, there are some cases where you will be asked to complete some training before you take the exam.

Prepare for the Certification Test

    Although you may be required to take a training course before taking the certification test again (depending on your state's specific requirements) you will definitely need to be prepared to take the test. You can find test preparation materials online, through your local nursing school or nursing licensing authority or at a bookseller. Study carefully because you will have to pay to take the licensing exam again if you fail and need to retake it.

Take and Pass the Certification Test

    Register for the CNA certification test. You can find this information through your local state nursing licensing authority. The cost for the test varies from state to state but is usually approximately $100 dollars, as of 2013. The CNA exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and five skills tests. The number of correct answers to pass also varies, depending on the state in which you reside. Once you have passed the exam, you can make a copy of your score to submit to the state licensing board.

Submit Application and Fees for Recertification

    Download the application for recertification from the state licensing website, or contact the state licensing board to request a paper copy. Fill it out completely and provide supporting documentation for all requested areas, including proof of your education and continuing education credits and proof of your certification exam test results. Make copies of all these materials to send, and retain the originals for your records. Submit the forms to the state board, along with whatever fee required for certification or recertification.

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