How to get a CNA License in California

The California State Board of Vocational Nurse and Psychiatric Technician Examiners (known as the BVNPT) governs all eligibility licenses such as CNA licenses in California. A CNA license is a special form of nursing aide certification that allows the bearer to care for clients without supervision by a licensed nurse. Learn how to get your CNA license in California in this article.

CNA License in California

How to Get a CNA License in CALIFORNIA

If you’re looking to get a CNA license in the beautiful state of California, make sure you are completely prepared. You must first do an approved training program for a CNA. This program will teach you everything about the job of a CNA, including how to form bonds with patients, how to prevent infections, and how to do CPR. Then, you will need to fill out an application for your CNA license and turn it over to your local Board of Nursing office.

The average salary for a Certified Nursing Assistant in the United States is between$31808 to $39048. Salary depends on many factors like education, additional skills, city, experience, and certification.

The CNA Program

A CNA program usually takes four to six weeks. In order to issue a Certificate of Clinical Competence, students must have successfully completed a 120-hour supervised clinical practicum in any health care setting where the nursing assistant was supervised by an RN or LPN.

The CNA program is an approved state program, which readies for students to become certified nursing assistants. It covers 12 modules, including the basics of being a CNA, the history of nursing, anatomy, and physiology, medications, infection control, patient observation and safety, and much more. Students will learn about the legal aspects of nursing caregiving including ethics and law within the nursing profession.

Tests Required for a California CNA License

The state of California requires CNAs to take a qualifying exam after completing a training course. CNAs are also required to have certification from their course provider for CPR, First Aid, Automated External Defibrillator (AED), Basic Life Support (BLS), ALS and PALS, Babysitting, and Childcare and Swimming + Water Safety, etc.

The American Red Cross offers CNA courses. In addition, CNAs need to retake the training course every two years and pass a recertification exam to continue working as CNAs in California.

Requirements for California CNA Exams

California has strict requirements for becoming a CNA, not all states do. The following qualifications are required for the California CNA exam:-

  • Age requirement – CNA Training in California, a qualified CNA is needed at a minimum age of 16.
  • Education Requirements – Eligible applicants require a high school diploma or equivalent.
  • Training Requirements – It is possible to become a Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) by completing an approved program, as long as they have demonstrated equivalent training in another healthcare area. By attending an approved California CNA program, nurses can be readily employed. Approved programs include a minimum of 60 hours of classroom instruction and 100 hours of supervised training.
  • Examination Requirements -California uses a National Nurse Aid Assessment Program (NNAAP) to certify workers. California is among 25 states that use this certification process. Candidates have to qualify for written or oral knowledge tests. Candidates can choose the types of written or oral examination. The oral test consists of 60 oral questions plus ten-word recognition/reading comprehension questions and written exam consists 70 multiple choice questions in English language.
  • Criminal Background Checks – The CNA exam in California requires you to do a criminal background check. For which the agency uses live scan (digital) fingerprinting process.
  • The Application Process – In California, live scan fingerprints will be collected from CNA-trainees for the program before they do patient care training. In some cases, the college handles this process for you.
  • Reciprocity – To be a qualified CNA in another state first registers with the California Nursing Assistant Registry. The registry will then verify your credentials from the state you’re from and can issue a California CNA certificate if equivalent to those from another state.

What is the Future of Nursing?

The future of nursing is a vision of a community-based, person-centered, prevention-oriented, and global profession. Nurses will be responsible leaders in the transformation to health care that is coordinated – from integrated service delivery to individualized care plans. It will highlight the nurse’s roles in ensuring that everyone, including vulnerable populations, has access to appropriate care.

When we talk about the future of nursing, we need to consider that there is a shortage of nurses. The BLS estimates that employment for nursing assistants will increase by 8% from 2020 to 2030. One of the main reasons for the nursing shortage is that many nurses nowadays are retiring after 25 or 30 years of service.


According to the US Bureau of labor statistics, California has a big number of CNA workers. California has 10000 CNAs workers presently. If you are looking for a career in the healthcare field, nursing assistant jobs are very popular.

It is possible to find work in most care facilities or nursing homes. However, you will need to complete courses and training before becoming certified as a CNA.

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