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CNA certification in Arizona

Nurse Beth   (78 Views 1 Comments)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice Column) Writer Innovator Expert

Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and specializes in Med Surg, Tele, ICU, Ortho.

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Dear Nurse Beth,

I recently moved to Arizona from California. I obtained my CNA/HHA certification in 1995. I started working in a convalescent facility immediately after getting certified. In 2002 I started working at a children's hospital and worked there for 14 years until this past July. 
In Arizona it IS required to have up-to-date certification to work at the children's hospitals. California DOES NOT require certification. I never renewed my certification in California.

My dilemma is that even though I have many years experience in acute care experience now I still need to be certified here in Arizona. 
Does that mean I need to take the certification exam again or take the entire course again?

I'm interested in going back to school to get prerequisites for nursing to either get my LPN and bridge to RN or take prerequisites and go straight for RN
Can you please give me some useful information on whom I may speak with as well as advice on the advantages/disadvantages of bridging or straight to RN?
I have no college and will need all of the required classes.I
I am 47 years old and will need to work while going to school too.
Thank you. I apologize for such a long entry. 

Dear Needs Certification,

You will either need to take a CNA course in Arizona or find out from the BON if you can submit proof of the courses you've taken in CA and challenge the certification exam.

The advantages to getting your LPN and then bridging to RN are that you can work sooner if that's a concern, and that it may be easier to get into LPN school.

The disadvantage is that it takes longer to get your RN in the long run. It's a roundabout way to end up in the same place. Before you get your LPN, be clear on how it is an advantage for you.

Speak to the schools you have in mind as well. Ask the LPN school how many of their students bridge, to what school, and what the pre-requisites are between programs.

Best wishes, 

Nurse Beth

Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!

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