The dream of being a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) is actualized after taking a course in an accredited institution for one to six months. After completing this course, the trainee CNA should get certified. In order to be allowed to work independently in a hospital or nursing home as a nursing assistant, the trainee nurse must pass the course successfully and then pass the licensing exam. With a license, a competent CNA can also opt for freelance service, acting as a private nursing attendant. During their practice, however, licensed CNAs should constantly keep their eyes on the status of their CNA licenses. Taking too long before checking the CNA license status can allow the license to lapse completely, making it invalid.
When Will the License Expire?
The duration of validity for a license varies from state to state. Typically, the duration ranges from one year to five years. Before this duration ends, the status of a CNA license will remain valid unless the nursing assistant commits an offense and is subjected to disciplinary action or complaints review under the State or Local Complaints Review Board.
The assistant’s medical history, criminal history, employment status, court orders, and or legal suits may also affect the status of a license. Besides, while in many states, the allotted licensing number for an assistant remains permanent, annual renewals is often necessary. Failure to make annual renewals makes the license status of a CNA invalid. Furthermore, at least 30-120 days before the validity period for a license lapses, many Licensing Authorities usually send CNA license status reports to nursing assistants and request them to pay their renewal fee in time.
CNA License Status Verification
Knowing the validity status of your license is quite critical. You will always operate legally and remain eligible for most CNA jobs so long as your license stays valid. In order to verify the status of your license, make sure to have the addresses and phone contacts of the state CNA Licensing authority and the Registry Office. By logging in to the Nurses Aide Registry and keying in the name of your state into the search engine, you can get these addresses and phone numbers easily. If you come from a state such as California with an online license status verification system, then you can add the required details online and know the status immediately. If your status does not have an online verification system, you will need to visit the registry office. Make sure to have available your required nominal fee, certification number, social security number, and any other relevant information. Alternatively, you can verify the CNA license status through an independent organization.
Online Verification of CNA License Status
A number of states have adopted an online verification of license status for both nursing assistants and their potential employers. Online verification reduces the cost of the process and makes sure that the process is expedited. Certified assistants can only use online verification if their states have such systems and if they are sure that their names are in the Licensing Board’s database.
An assistant must also have a social security number, a valid e-mail address, a nursing license number, and a debit or credit card in order to use the online systems. Most states with online verification systems allow certified nurses to either enter their names and last four digits of their social security numbers, or enter their assigned state licensing codes. Furthermore, a certified assistant can verify status online either through the State Licensing Registry, or through an independent organization offering the same service.
Physical CNA License Status Verification
For a physical verification, the certified nursing assistant must travel to the State Licensing Authority’s office. The option is usually costly and should be considered mostly by nurse aides coming from states without online verification, or by those who have other details they want to confirm or sort out at the registry office. When going for physical status verification, it is important to carry your social security certificate, license, personal identification documents, and the verification fee charged by your state. Most states have the information in a digitized format and you will verify your status within a few minutes. However, it is usually wise to start the journey early in order to arrive at the registry offices early, and get attended to as soon as you desire.
After checking your CNA license status, you can renew it immediately if it is about to expire. While renewal fees vary from state to state, they are usually less than half the initial license registration fees. Some states like Alaska requires that a license is renewed only for those employed for at least 160 hours annually while others require continuing education. It is important to check all the requirements before making an application for license renewal. You will also not be able to renew your license if you are under a felony, discipline, or misdemeanor since your last renewal.