The Arizona State Board of Nursing (AZBN) classifies nursing assistants into two types:
- Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA), also known as Registry CNA
- Licensed Nursing Assistant (LNA)
Here are the requirements for both to get certified:
- For the CNA:
- Completes the state-approved CNA training program
- Passes the Arizona Nurse Aide Competency Exam (ANACE)
- For the LNA:
- All requirements for CNA
- Submits an application for licensing
- Undergoes complete background checks
Both will be registered in the Arizona Nurse Aide Registry.
But, what makes these two different?
Well, to be a CNA:
- You don’t have to undergo a background check
- Certification and renewal are free
- AZBN has limited jurisdiction
- Must practice 8 hours every two years for certification renewal
Meanwhile, to be an LNA:
- Background check is a must
- Applying for a license costs you a fee
- AZBN has full jurisdiction
- Must practice at least 160 hours within two years to be eligible for license renewal
Taking on a CNA Training Program in Arizona
Whether you’re a CNA or LNA, you both have the same responsibility.
—To help senior nurses provide basic patient care to residents.
That’s why the AZBN requires you to enroll in a state-approved training program.
This ensures that you’ll receive the minimum state and federal standards for nursing assistants.
In Arizona, training facilities usually deliver short yet highly intensive CNA education.
There, you’ll undergo 120 hours of training with classroom instructions and clinical practices.
Listed below are some of the state-approved CNA training facilities that you can check out.
20 CNA Schools in Arizona
|Arizona Medical Training Institute||Mesa, AZ 85201|
|Bradshaw Mountain High School||Prescott Valley, AZ 86314|
|Central Arizona College||Multiple Locations|
|Cochise College||Multiple Locations|
|Deer Valley High School||Glendale, AZ 85308|
|East Valley Institute of Technology||Mesa, AZ 85201|
|Foothills Rehabilitation Center||Tucson, AZ 85712|
|Gardens Rehab and Care Center||Kingman, AZ 86401|
|Gila Ridge High School||Yuma, AZ 85365|
|Haven of Camp Verde||Camp Verde, AZ 86322|
|Mohave Community College||Multiple Locations|
|Northland Pioneer College||Multiple Locations|
|Payson Care Center||Payson, AZ 85541|
|Pima Community College||Multiple Locations|
|Regional Center For Border Health||Multiple Locations|
|Surprise Health and Rehabilitation Center||Surprise, AZ 85374|
|Tucson Casas Adobes||Tucson, AZ 85704|
|Valley Academy for Career and Technology Education||Cottonwood, AZ 86326|
|West-Mec Northwest Campus||Surprise, AZ 85374|
|Yavapai College||Prescott, AZ 86301|
Evaluating a CNA Candidate
In Arizona, a CNA candidate can be certified in two ways:
- CNA certification by examination
- CNA certification by endorsement
Let’s take a closer look at each one below.
CNA Certification by Examination
This path is usually taken by Arizona-based nursing assistants.
To qualify for the ANACE, you must have either:
- Completed the state-approved CNA program within the past 24 months
- Provided proof of employment if you’ve completed it more than two years ago
- Submitted a Nursing Student/Military/Foreign Nursing Graduate Waiver Request form approved by the AZBN
If you satisfy the first condition, the training facility will send your proof of legal presence to the test vendor, D&SDT-Headmaster.
The exam has two components: a knowledge test and a skills test.
For the knowledge test, you’ll answer 75 questions to be completed within 75 minutes.
For the skills test, you’ll have to perform three to four random nursing assistant tasks accurately within 35 minutes.
Note that the knowledge test is usually in the written format.
But you can request an oral version if you have limited English literacy.
In the oral test, 63 out of 75 questions will be read orally to you, while the other 12 will not.
These 12 questions will assess your reading comprehension of the English language.
Also, you won’t be allowed to bring translation/bilingual dictionaries to the exam room.
Exam Results and Attempts
Your official exam results will be available on the day your tests are scored.
The D&SDT-Headmaster will send these to you via email.
Should you fail, you’ll have an unlimited number of attempts to secure a passing score on ANACE.
This is available to you on the condition that you’ve taken the exam within two years of completing the CNA program.
Do note that the AZBN requires those who fail the knowledge test on the third try will have to wait 45 days before scheduling a retake exam.
For you to take ANACE, you’ll have to pay the following fees:
- Knowledge test – written (initial or retake) – $35
- Knowledge test – oral (initial or retake) – $45
- Skills test (initial or retake) – $95
Should you have any questions about the testing process, test schedules, or eligibility to test, contact D&SDT-Headmaster.
PO Box 6609
Helena, MT 59604-6609
Phone #: (800) 393-8664
CNA Certification by Endorsement
Usually, this method is applicable for out-of-state CNAs transferring their registry into Arizona.
For you to be eligible, you must satisfy these requirements:
- Listed on the state of origin’s Nurse Aide Registry in good standing
- Worked as a CNA with pay in the past 24 months
- Completed an equivalent 120-hour CNA program at the state of origin
- Passed the certification exam at the state of origin
- Paid the endorsement fee of $50
If you’re coming into Arizona as an endorsement CNA, then you’ll have to have practiced for eight hours in the past 24 months.
If you’re an endorsement LNA, then you’ll have to:
- Have practiced for 160 hours in the past 24 months
- Pay the fingerprint fee of $50
So in total, an endorsement CNA will pay $50 while an endorsement LNA will pay $100.
Fingerprint-based Background Check
As of 2016, the AZBN has not required CNAs background checks, only for LNAs.
However, long-term care facilities will ask CNAs for a fingerprint clearance card.
The fingerprint clearance card will be issued by the Department of Public Safety (DPS).
You can also get this card at the local police department or sheriff’s office.
Note that the only fingerprint card accepted is FD-258 Blue and White Applicant cards.
The processing time will take about six to eight weeks.
Then, the results from DPS will be sent to the Fingerprint Clearance Board.
In Arizona, a CNA’s salary depends on many factors, such as:
As of this writing, the current average annual salary is about $31,000.
Take a look at the table below for the salary offers across the state.Annual Salary Range:
Average Salary of CNAs in Arizona