CNA Career: The Pay, The Work, The Training

CNA pay and training

What is a Certified Nursing Assistant & How to Become One in Kansas

Women studying to become a CNA and graphic about the pay and opportunities

What does CNA stand for?

CNA stands for Certified Nursing Assistant. A CNA helps patients with various health-related needs. They work under the supervision of an RN (Registered Nurse) or an LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse). At Mt Hope Nursing Center, CNAs are an important part of the great work we strive to do every day to best take care of our residents.

What is a CNA Job?

CNA and nursing home resident in hallway at Mt Hope Nursing Center in Kansas

The job of a CNA is very important in healthcare and medical facilities. A Certified Nursing Assistant handles the general care of patients. Some of the primary duties of a CNA include:

  • Taking & recording vital signs (heart rate, blood pressure, etc)
  • Assisting patients to and from a chair or bed
  • Helping patients eat and handle personal hygiene functions

Essentially, the role of a CNA is to help a patient enjoy a good quality of life by receiving the necessary assistance with the everyday functions of such activities as eating, bathing, and sleeping.

What else is CNA known as? Some other terms used to refer to this position include NA (Nursing Assistant), STNA (State Tested Nurse Assistant), and PCA (Patient Care Assistant).

Where can a CNA work besides a nursing home?

The work of a CNA is important not just to the patients themselves, but also to the supervising medical staff. Therefore, CNAs are in high demand in various medical facilities. In addition to CNAs being needed at nursing homes, hospitals and assisted living facilities often hire CNAs to be on staff. In addition, a CNA can work directly in the personal home of a patient or client who isn’t in need of the extensive care provided inside a nursing home or other healthcare facility.

Demand for CNAs in Kansas

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Kansas is among the states with the highest demand for Certified Nursing Assistants. This map indicates in dark green the areas with the highest demand for CNAs. This shows that nearly the entire state of Kansas has a large number of CNAs. In 2018, there were more than 20,000 Certified Nursing Assistants employed in Kansas. In fact, looking at the quotient of employed CNAs per all other jobs, Kansas is ranked third highest in the country!

U.S. Map of employment for CNA job

How to become a CNA

It is mandatory that you go through a state-accredited program to be certified as a CNA. You also need to have a high school diploma or GED.

How long does it take to become a CNA?

CNA certificate programs are generally between 6 – 12 weeks long. But the minimum number of training and clinical hours varies by state. Kansas’ requirement for certification is 90 training hours and 45 clinical hours. This is about the average length of time among states across the country. No state requires less than 75 hours of training. Some states that have more time requirements include Missouri (175 training hours and Maine (180 training hours).

How much does it cost to become a CNA?

Because the program is so short for CNAs, the cost to get the necessary training is relatively affordable. It is cheaper than pursuing a career as an RN or LPN. The largest variation in cost is dependent upon which institution you attend to receive your CNA certification. Some colleges, universities, and training programs offer financial assistance.

Young women in college studying for nursing certification

The average cost for getting the training for a CNA certification is $1200. You may have additional costs for books or student fees depending on the institution you attend. You can also expect to pay about $125 for the certification examination and an additional $50 to register your certification with your state.

To receive your certification, you will need to pass the Kansas Nurse Aide Test after you complete the training program. It is a multiple-choice exam and you have to score at least a 75% to pass. To learn more about training courses available in Kansas for credentialing, go to the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services.

CNAs are reimbursed the expense of training by their first employer.

FREE Class to Learn More about CNA Certification

The American Red Cross offers a CNA program with classes available in cities in several states, although none in Kansas. However, they do provide a FREE online information session for you to learn exactly what their CNA program entails.

How much money does a CNA make?

You can expect to make an annual salary of just under $30,000 as a CNA. The average salary for a CNA, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics for 2018 , is $28,540 per year. Since this is the average pay, that factors in the earned amount for new as well as more experienced CNAs. Therefore, you can expect to make less than $27,000 when you first begin work as a CNA here in Kansas. However, most CNA positions are hourly positions, meaning you are paid by the hour for your work.

How much does a CNA make in Kansas?

Certified Nursing Assistants are in high demand in Kansas but are paid at just slightly under the national average. According to 2018 data, a CNA working in Kansas makes on average of $26,210 a year, which equates to being paid about $12.60 an hour.

However, with the demand for CNAs being high in Kansas, that does mean you are in a great position to find employment. In fact, Mt Hope Nursing Center in Mount Hope, Kansas is often looking for caring and professional CNAs to help deliver skilled, person-directed care to all of our patients. Check here for the current nursing home openings our facility is hiring for.

Living Well as a CNA in Kansas

If you’re looking to begin your career as a CNA, there is no better place than here in Mount Hope.

View of country fields outside Mt Hope Nursing Center near Wichita

Our small and cozy community offers a great opportunity to enjoy small-town living in a country environment.

The town of Mount Hope is located in the far northwest corner of Sedgwick County. Being located just minutes away from Wichita, you get to enjoy the best of both worlds. You get to be a part of the quiet, country setting you’ll see right outside our front door. And you will be just minutes away from every convenience available to you in the city of Wichita, Newton or Hutchinson.

Mt Hope Nursing Center has a great history. We have been a part of the community for nearly half a century. We treat every employee and every resident like family. Administrator Gina Terry has been with the facility since 2002. Her background as an EMT in Mount Hope gives her a unique background combined with great passion to make Mt Hope a wonderful place to work.

Take a look inside our facility with a virtual tour to see what it could be like working with the great team at Mount Hope Nursing Home!

Virtual Tour of the Mount Hope Nursing Center

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