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Career Pathways

Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)

CNA PDF Download

Description of a CNA

Under the supervision of a registered professional nurse, Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) perform a variety of nursing tasks listed on the Official CNA Skills List after they have satisfactorily demonstrated their ability to do so, e.g. taking temperature and pulse, monitoring food intake, urine output, changing bed linens, and assisting with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs).

CNA Work Settings and Populations Served

  • Work with people of all ages who need nursing care and assistance with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs).
  • Can work in a hospital, nursing facility, assisted living or residential care facility, adult day, home care, or other healthcare setting.

A CNA must be supervised by a registered professional nurse. 

Hiring Requirements

A person must be listed as “active” on the Certified Nursing Assistant and Direct Care Worker Registry (CNA Registry).

A criminal background check and certain types of convictions may prohibit employment as a CNA.   

A person may not work as a CNA if the CNA Registry shows they have a substantiated finding of abuse or neglect or misappropriation of property of a client, patient, or resident.

Continued Employment Requirements   

  • A CNA must complete 8 hours of paid qualified employment over a two-year period to maintain active certification as a CNA 


  • Be at least 16 years old 
  • Can read and write English 
  • Have completed 9th grade (although a high school diploma or equivalent competency is preferred) 
  • Successfully complete the 130‐hour CNA Training Program.  
  • Complete an orientation program conducted by your employer 
  • For nursing facility settings, receive at least 12 hours of in-service training, annually 


A person who is certified as a CNA can move into the following positions with additional training. Some career pathways include

  • CNA‐M 
  • LPN 
  • Medical Assistant 
  • Nursing Degree
  • MHRT‐1 
  • DSP 
  • CIPSS 
  • MHRT‐C