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Certified Nurse Aide Requirements in West Virginia

West Virginia nurse aides are under the jurisdiction of the West Virginia Department of Health & Human Services. They must meet state-mandated training and examination requirements.

Select a West Virginia Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) Topic:

Education and Examination Eligibility

There are two pathways to initial certification: nurse aide training and nursing training. The direct path is to complete a state-approved nurse aide program: one that is specifically authorized by the West Virginia Office of Health Facility Licensure & Certification. West Virginia programs are a minimum of 120 hours and include at least 55 supervised clinical hours (http://ohflac.wv.gov/NA/requirements.html). They take place over a minimum of four to six weeks. They are available at a variety of institutions, including high schools, colleges, and long term care facilities. Prospective students can search for approved programs online (https://ohflac.wv.gov/Lookup/FacilitySearch).

Click Here to learn about Nurse Aide programs as well as other entry to nursing and health care programs in West Virginia.

LPN and RN students are also eligible to challenge the CNA examination. The student will need to have completed fundamentals of nursing coursework before seeking examination. It will also be necessary to have put in 32 hours in a West Virginia nursing facility.

Examination Requirements

After program completion, prospective CNAs take a competency examination. It consists of two separate tests: a multiple choice written evaluation and a practical skills evaluation. A sample multiple choice test is available on the website of the test vendor, Professional Healthcare Development, LLC (http://www.profhd.com/).

The written evaluation may be taken in oral format. A reader will be utilized; he or she will read each question two times. Candidates who opt to take the examination in oral form will need to complete some questions that utilize flow sheets; the purpose is to make sure that the test taker has the ability to complete the documentation tasks that will be required in a nursing home. The oral examination must be requested at the time of application. The instructor will need to document need for oral administration.

The skills evaluation requires the candidate to carry out a scenario that includes multiple nursing assistant duties; another individual will act the part of nursing home resident. The candidate will perform initial steps (such as greeting the resident) and will demonstrate proper hand washing technique. The candidate will then carry out four other duties and complete with closing steps (such as asking the resident if he or she has everything needed). Candidates can find the steps for all testable skills in the skills procedure document; this can be found on the website of Professional Healthcare Development. The document also explains how points are allocated.

Candidates who have sustained injuries or are pregnant will need a doctor’s release to participate in the skills evaluation.

Candidates must pass the examination within two years of the time that they completed their CNA training programs. West Virginia allows a maximum of three examination attempts. A candidate who is still unsuccessful will need to retrain.

The Examination Process

Both examinations are taken the same day. Fees are to be paid in advance. It costs $125 to taken the written and skills test combination, $160 to take the oral and skills test combination. In many cases, the employing facility has the responsibility of paying for examination.

The test is currently offered at ten West Virginia sites (http://www.profhd.com/directionsmapquesta.html). They are located in the following cities:

  • Beckley
  • Buckhannon
  • Charleston
  • Keyser
  • Martinsburg
  • New Cumberland
  • Parkersburg
  • Petersburg
  • Wheeling
  • Williamson

PHD has posted a calendar of examination dates for the coming year (http://www.profhd.com/test%20dates%202015.pdf). Applications should be in at least two weeks before the desired examination date. Admission tickets will be mailed after the vendor has confirmed eligibility. Registration status can also be confirmed on the PHD website. Rescheduling is to be done at least five business days in advance. (Absences may be excused in extreme circumstances.)

The candidate will need to bring identification, social security card, and admission ticket. Also required are pencils with erasers and a watch with a second hand; PHD notes that it is not permissible for candidates to share watches.

Test results will be sent in the mail approximately ten business days after the examination. Preliminary test results are also posted on the PHD site; the candidate will need to know his or her testing ID.

A re-examination candidate will submit a new application and fees; the program instructor will assist. There is a $70 charge to retake the skills examination. A candidate pays $55 to retake the written examination or $105 to retake the oral examination.

The candidate handbook, available from PHD, provides a comprehensive description of the West Virginia nurse aide certification process.

The Application Process

The examination application is also the certification examination. In many cases, a candidate will have a sponsor who provides application materials and offers assistance filling them out; the sponsor may be the nursing facility or training program. Applications are also available on the Professional Healthcare Development website (http://www.profhd.com/). Candidates can type the forms online.

A candidate who is successful at both parts of the evaluation will be issued online certification. Status can be confirmed by typing the name and last four digits of the social security number (https://ohflac.wv.gov/NA/NALookup.aspx).

There is a $10 fee to have a certificate of completion issued.

Lapsed Nurse Aides

Former nurse aides with credentials that lapsed within the prior five years can take refresher courses instead of enrolling in a full nursing assistant program. The refresher course is a minimum 16 hours; nursing assistant skills may be carried out in a laboratory setting. PHD has provided a checklist to help candidates determine eligibility (http://www.profhd.com/Nurse%20Aide%20Refresher%20Information2013.pdf).

The individual will need to apply to take the examination within 60 days of refresher completion and pass it within six months. Three examination attempts are permitted.

Out-of-State Nurse Aides

An individual who holds active credentialing in another U.S. state can be granted reciprocal placement on the West Virginia registry. Reciprocity applications are available on the site of the Department of Health and Human Services (http://ohflac.wv.gov/applications.html).

Additional Information

The West Virginia Office of Health Facility Licensure and Certification (http://ohflac.wv.gov) can be reached at (304) 558-0050.

Professional Healthcare Development, LLC can be reached by telephone at (304) 733-6145 or by email at ‘info at profhd.com’.

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