CNA Classes in Arkansas

The Bureau of Labor and Statistics have already confirmed a potential shortage of Certified Nursing Assistants in the coming years, and Arkansas is no exception. Health care workers are in short supply, and the opportunity for CNA career advancement in Arkansas is excellent. Here the starting salary for CNAs is typically $22,500 and can go upwards of $29,000 yearly. If you’re after sustainability, now could be a great time to consider pursuing a rewarding career as a Nursing Assistant, beginning with enrolling in CNA classes in Arkansas.

CNA Training in Arkansas

Health care facilities in Arkansas are not allowed to let an individual serve as a CNA unless they have completed a minimum 120 hours of theory and practical training. Only then are they recognized by the Arkansas Department of Health as having gone through the proper training to become a qualified CNA. Once a prospective student has completed their 120 hours of lecture and practical application, the next step is for them to write the CNA certification exam, which is conducted by Prometrics. Accredited CNA programs offer standard courses such as palliative care, personal care, bathing, vital signs evaluation, charting, lifts, and first aid.

Arkansas Tech University in Russellville offers a CNA program that allows one to seamlessly proceed to a more advanced nursing certification such as Licensed Practical Nursing. Enrolling in programs such as this provides an excellent opportunity to improve hiring prospects and negotiate better pay. You can also earn credit hours in colleges such as Mid-South Community College.

A typical CNA class or program in Arkansas usually costs a minimum of $500. Note: This usually does not include scrubs, textbooks, and other needed materials. As to the course duration, it can range from a few intensive weeks to full semesters. When deciding on the right school for you, keep in mind program availabilities as not all institutions offer the program more than once a year.

If you’re interested to pursue a medical career as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) in Arkansas, you know by now that one of the most important steps is to get the formal training that the federal rules require. The formal training could be in two ways:

1) An ‘on the job training’ under direct supervision of a general registered nurse and

2) Through CNA classes in Arkansas technical schools, community colleges, and even high schools.

School Requirements

Schools that are offering CNA classes often have varying sets of requirements for letting you into the training. The state and federal government, however, lists some specific requirements for getting a CNA certification in Arkansas. This includes getting an updated criminal background check, presenting at least two fingerprint cards, two passport size photos, and Photo ID. It is also required by the state that you finish at least high school (as proved by your GED certification) and must be 16 years old and above in order to qualify for the training program.

Those who seek CNA training in Arkansas need only look to the Arkansas Department of Health. The ADH In-Home Health and Hospice provides classes and training for Certified Nursing Assistants, also known throughout the state as Personal Care Aides. The five-day course is completed in 40 hours, and it is held in different regions throughout the state at different times of the year. Upcoming classes are being offered in the northeast and southwest regions of Arkansas, and interested individuals should call the ADH at 501-661-2951.

When it comes to learning styles, not every student is alike. Some may prefer a more structured, classroom-based education, and for CNA classes in Arkansas, Petra Allied Health is a leading source. The affordable class, priced at $480, does not require registration fees, and tuition does not include textbooks, which cost $30. An $89 state exam fee is required, however, for students who become employed by a long-term care facility, the exam fee is waived. Upcoming classes are being held in Springdale, Hot Springs, and Fort Smith, Ark.

Across Arkansas, St. Vincent Health System and Catholic Health Initiatives offers patient care and training for individuals who want to work within the St. Vincent Health System. The College of Healthcare Professionals’ five-week course includes the mandated 90 hours of training, plus 110 hours of training that is specific to working in the St. Vincent Health System. Study topics include basic nursing duties, as well as how to work in acute-care and long-term care facilities. After hospital-wide training, CNA classes are set to resume in 2013, with class dates to be posted in Nov. 5. Application fees are $25, and tuition is set at $390. St. Vincent estimates the cost of textbooks at $70-$75, and the price of scrubs, a watch with a second hand, and the state exam ($90) is additional.

Certification Requirements

Federal rules governing Arkansas require that nursing assistants get at least 75 hours of lecture, plus a minimum of 15 hours of supervised clinical training. Basically, the whole training could last from about two to six weeks. CNA training in Arkansas generally include subjects on anatomy, nutrition, physiology, body mechanics and skills on communication. Upon finishing your classes, the next challenge would be to pass the certification examination – the final ticket to getting eligibility for work.

Once you passed the exam and finally got your certification as a CNA, you will be required to enlist yourself in the local Arkansas Nurse Aid Registry. This would be the state’s official record of its Certified Nursing Assistants, and your prospective employer’s means of checking your background.