California CNA Certification and Licensing
California CNA Program Basics
California is different from many other states when it comes to the CNA training programs available. While some states may have dozens of programs, California has literally hundreds. The state’s Department of Health Services (DHS) approves all these programs. California also has placed the minimum age requirement for CNA students at 16, though 15 year olds may take training classes if their training will be complete at age 16. Many employers may not hire CNAs that are under 18.
California CNA Requirements and Certification
All potential students must be 16 or will be 16 years old when their training is complete. CNA students must also submit to and pass a criminal background check. While in training, the students must also have physical exams to ensure they are not a health risk to their patients. The certification programs offered must comply with California's requirements. No matter where the classes are taken - community college, community centers, in facility, or adult schools, the programs are at least 150 hours of both in classroom training and clinicals. When the classes are completed, the student must pass a competency examination. If the student passes this exam they are placed onto the DHS Nurse Aide Registry.
California CNA Transferal of Certification
A nurse aide from another state may apply for reciprocity in California. If the CNA has an active certification with no record of neglect or abuse, has worked at least one day as a CNA (for pay) in the past 24 months, and provides the proper forms required by the state DHS, the CNA may work in California and transfer their license. Along with a criminal check, applicants for reciprocity must have a live scan of their fingerprints taken after they have moved into the state.