Hard-working certified nursing assistants want opportunities to train in a real world clinical environment. Nursing homes need certified nursing assistants to manage daily grooming and basic personal needs of residents. Some nursing homes bring the needs of residents and CNAs together by providing onsite paid training. When CNAs agree to work for the nursing home, they gain professional skills and state licenses while nursing homes receive a necessary work force.

Quality Improvement Organizations

Contact your state's Quality Improvement Organization (QIO). Each state has a QIO, a contractor firm that works nursing homes to improve health care quality. All QIOs work closely with nursing homes in their state. Program Managers and senior leaders at QIOs know which nursing homes offer free training to CNAs.

Ask to speak with the liaison involved with nursing home quality improvement. Then ask about the nursing homes offering the training you need.

Nursing homes train CNAs based upon their work force needs. If a nursing home has enough CNAs to take care of their residents, they may suspend training until they need more. QIOs know which nursing homes train CNAs for free.

QIOs may also offer preliminary health care worker training to assist inexperienced people interested in a CNA career. These classes involve learning the language of health care and duties of a CNA. Inquire about these programs.

Contact the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid to learn about your state's QIO.

State Department of Health

Call your state Department of Health's CNA licensing office. Find the number on your state's DoH home page. These offices maintain records of all licensed CNAs in the state. A polite request to the head of the CNA license office may yield information you need to identify nursing homes offering free training in your area.

State Department of Labor & Training

Visit your state's Department of Labor & Training. Employed workers seeking resources to change careers may learn about nursing homes offering paid CNA training from their local DLT. Contact the manager of the office closest to you. Ask about what nursing homes offer to train new CNAs.

Your state wants to train more CNAs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the needs of an aging U.S. population require more than 700,000 new CNAs in the next 10 years.

Nursing Homes

Visit your local library or search online to make a list of nursing homes. Use SIC Codes 8051, 8052, 8059, and NAIC Codes 62311 and 623312 to search for nursing homes and continued care residences. Contact each nursing home by phone or email. Inquire about whether they train CNAs in exchange for future employment.

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