Certified Nurse Assistant Requirements in Missouri

Missouri’s Certified Nurse Assistants are under the jurisdiction of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. The must meet state-specific training requirements. All Missouri CNAs are required to pass the state examination; this is a mandate even for those who hold current certification as CNAs in other jurisdictions. In most cases, CNAs must also complete nursing assistant training programs.

Missouri offers several specialty credentials in addition to the basic CNA credential. For some credentials, educational requirements are set higher.

Select a Missouri Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) Topic:

Coursework and Examination Requirements

The Missouri CNA, CMT, LIMA and Insulin Registry has provided a list of approved training agencies (http://health.mo.gov/safety/cnaregistry/). Nursing assistant programs may be offered by community colleges, vocational technical schools, private schools, high schools, nursing homes, or qualifying hospitals.

Click here to learn about Nurse Assistant programs as well as additional entry to nursing and health care programs in Missouri.

Students must meet state requirements in order to enroll in training programs. They can expect background screening. A student under age 18 can train if he or she is taking high school health education coursework. Otherwise, the minimum age is 18.

Missouri nursing assistant programs include 75 hours of theory and 100 hours of clinical (on-the-job) training. Courses culminate in a two-part final examination. The final examination tests practical skills as well as knowledge. The knowledge portion is available in written and oral formats.

The student must complete the examination soon after completing other course requirements. A candidate who allows six months to go by is required to repeat training.

A student who fails the written or knowledge test is allowed to retake it two times but must pass within 90 days of first failure.

Challenging the CNA Examination

Some individuals can be exempted from taking the full Missouri nursing assistant course. In some cases, only the examination will be required.

Nursing assistants who have twelve months of experience in hospital long-term units have this option. Nursing students who completed fundamentals of nursing within the previous five years can also challenge the examination, provided that the fundamentals course included a clinical rotation.

Nursing graduates who fail the licensing exam can are also eligible for exam-only. The same goes for internationally educated nurses who are seeking nursing licensure in the United States but have not yet met all requirements.

Individuals who have been trained as psychiatric aides or as nursing assistants in acute care are allowed to challenge the examination only after taking the orientation module and receiving 100 hours of on-the-job training in long-term care; the training may be provided in a traditional long-term facility or in a hospital long-term care unit.

Other individuals with gerontological and healthcare training may receive approval to skip some portions of the Missouri CNA course.

Some long-term care facilities are approved to offer the CNA examination. advises those who are not currently employed by long-term care facilities but wish to take the exam to contact a community college or vocational technical school.

Click here to learn about Nurse Assistant programs as well as additional entry to nursing and health care programs in Missouri.

Individuals who challenge the examination are allowed only one examination attempt. A test taker who fails either portion is required to take the CNA training course.

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Reinstating Inactive Credentials

Missouri distinguishes between nursing assistants with inactive status and those with expired certificates. The certification is considered expired if the individual has not provided nursing services for compensation in five years. In this instance, it will be necessary to take the entire CNA course before again working as a CNA in a long-term care facility. The certification is considered inactive if the CNA has not worked for two years; an individual with an inactive certificate is allowed to challenge the examination.

The Application Process

Approved programs may coordinate the application process. Individuals who are seeking exemption from CNA coursework will need to submit materials to the Department of Health & Senior Services. They must include copies of their social security cards. Additional eligibility documentation will be required; this will vary depending on background.

Nursing students will need to submit transcripts. Individuals who have failed the LPN or RN licensing examination may instead submit educational documentation and notification of failure.

Healthcare workers who have had long-term care training will submit documentation of training and employment. Psychiatric aides will include copies of their psychiatric aide certification as well as documentation of training.

Nurses who trained outside the United States must submit copies of several documents, all translated into English. Among them are out-of-country criminal background checks, transcripts, and certificates or licenses.

Out-of-state CNAs must submit copies of their certification. If the out-of-state registry does not track employment, the CNA must also provide evidence of having worked at least eight hours during each two-year period.

Missouri CNAs with inactive status will submit copies of their certificates.

Adjunct Nursing Assistant Certifications

Certified Medication Technician/ Insulin Administration: The CNA is among the foundational requirements for the Certified Medication Technician (CMT) credential. A CMT must also have a high school diploma or GED. The school offering the training program will require the CNA to pass the mathematics, vocabulary and comprehension portions of the Test for Adult Basic Education (TABE). In some cases, individuals are allowed to challenge the CMT examination (http://health.mo.gov/safety/cnaregistry/cmt.php).

A CMT can also be certified in insulin administration.

Restorative Nurse Assistant: Missouri is in the beginning stages of offering a Restorative Nurse Assistant (RNA) credential. The Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services recommends that nurse assistants have six months of experience before training as RNAs (http://health.mo.gov/safety/cnaregistry/rna.php).

Additional Information

The Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services can be reached by telephone at 573-526-5686 or by email at ‘info at health.mo.gov’. (http://health.mo.gov/safety/cnaregistry/)

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