Certified Nursing Assistant Examination – Clinical Portion

If you’ve spend any time researching the requirements to become a certified nursing assistant in your state (see www.cnacertificationscoop.com for more info), then you’re likely aware training consists of theoretical classroom study and hands-on clinical application. While this is a standard training model, the CNA examination takes on a similar outline. Although each state regulates exam specifics, the majority of CNA examinations requires test-takers to undergo a clinical test to showcase their ability to perform certain procedures.

The Clinical Exam – Its Purpose

The primary function of the clinical exam portion is to evaluate your hands-on skills regarding patient care. While theoretical training is essential to learn how to perform the varied duties you’ll be presented throughout your work days, clinical training marries your textbook knowledge with physical training. Although every state CNA exam may feature different clinical tasks, the Certified Nursing Assistant Candidate Handbook published by your state’s board of nursing offers detailed information and study tips for this exam unit. Use this handbook as your primary study guide to prepare for clinical testing.

What to Expect

While difficult to explain in complete detail what you can expect during the clinical exam, most candidate handbooks require test-takers to undergo a minimum of five assigned CNA tasks. Each of these tasks uses the following formula:

1.) The Nursing Aide Evaluator reads a specific scenario. After the scenario is read, it’s your time to shine.

2.) With the help of a volunteer “patient,” typically another exam taker, you’re required to finish the task set forth during the examination.

3.) Communicate with the “patient” as you would in real life. Keep conversation light and use your knowledge learned through training to complete each task set forth by the five scenarios to the best of your ability. If you believe that you did a task incorrectly, immediately inform the Evaluator what parts of the task you’d wish to repeat as you feel you made a mistake. While this may lower your score, repeating a task correctly prevents a complete negative mark on your score sheet. Remember, the Evaluator may not answer any questions, but she may re-read the scenario to provide further clarification.

What Tasks Must I Do?

While a complete answer to this question would simplify your study time, it’s impossible to say exactly what tasks are involved within the clinical exam. This being noted, there are several general the exam portions all states follow. Typically, you’ll be required to perform some form of measurement skill, such as checking patient weight, blood pressure or urine output. Also, make sure you wash your hands by lathering your entire hand and lower forearm with soap and scrubbing for a minimum of 20-seconds. Never forget to perform this action before each new task. As stated above, it’s impossible to clearly outline the entire clinical exam; however, your state’s candidate handbook will offer general topics and study references to aid in this somewhat complex exam unit.

Certified Nursing Assistant Examination – Clinical Portion

Is Free CNA Training a Viable Option?

When it comes to working as a certified nursing assistant, the most important element to preparing yourself for this career is the quality of your training. While you must attend a training program that’s been accredited by your State Board of Nursing in order to sit for the certification exam, there seems to be an increase in aspiring CNAs searching for free training programs. While the notion of “you get what you pay for” is increasingly true when it comes to career training programs, are there viable training options for those who cannot afford a traditional education module?

Advertised Programs

If you perform a simple Google search inquiring about free CNA training programs, you’ll receive thousands upon thousands of businesses, programs and forum posts stating you can receive the training you need without paying a dime. The first element you should be aware of is that training is rarely free. One of the most common “scams” when it comes to online CNA training is advertising copy that states the classes are free. While the classes may indeed be free, students are surprised to find out that they must pay for books, practical classes and, of course, the examination. In some of the most severe cases, you must purchase books published by the actual school. This is one of the oldest “scams,” as these for-profit schools lure in students with a promise of free training, but only to try to persuade them to purchase their specific training books at a high cost.

Free CNA Training Programs

While it’s easy to become distressed when trying to find a free CNA training program, especially when you have a deep desire to enter this workforce, but your current income doesn’t have enough flexibility to pay for tuition, there are several options that are actually free.

Although the following may not be available where you live, if you’re searching for a free CNA training program, then these are your best options.

The American Red Cross – Established decades ago, The American Red Cross is known for its ability to assist individuals who are truly in need. While you may only know this company for its blood drives, did you know they offer one of the most complex and comprehensive CNA training programs? In fact, these programs are often completely free of charge. If you’re interested in learning about this option, point your Web browser to their website to determine whether or not CNA training classes are held in your city. If not, contact the Red Cross and ask about opening up a training option within your city or region.
Hospitals – While many aspiring CNAs wish to work in a hospital setting, did you know that the majority of established hospitals offer free CNA training programs? These programs are highly respected within this industry as the coursework is not only accredited by the respective State Board of Nursing, but the information included is the latest in the industry. Moreover, students who successfully complete a hospital CNA training program are often offered positions within the same hospital as they’re given an opportunity to network with hiring manager and working CNAs.

Is Free CNA Training a Viable Option?