West Virginia is known for its hills and mountains because it is part of the Appalachian Mountain Range. Famous cities include Wheeling, known for its tourism, Charleston, the capital, and Harper’s Ferry, an important site during the Civil War. Today, residents and visitors enjoy the gorgeous outdoor scenery around the many rivers and lakes found in the “Mountain State” where the motto is “Mountaineers are Always Free.” CNAs have an excellent opportunity to find jobs here because West Virginia has the oldest median age in the U.S. In fact, over 17 percent of the population is over the age of 65, and the state’s median age is 40.
– Capital: Charleston
– Minimum Wage: $8.75
– Number of Hospitals: 55
– Number of Nursing Homes: 10,888
– Total Population: 1,850,326
– Population (ages 45-64): 522,404
– Population (ages 65+): 328,612
– Population (ages 85+): 38,735
– West Virginia University
– Wheeling Jesuit University
There are two major ways of becoming a CNA in West Virginia. The most direct route is to attend a CNA training course, often found at vocational schools and even high schools and occasionally taught at long-term care facilities. The West Virginia Office of Health Facility Licensure & Certification mandates that students must complete at least 120 hours altogether. Of these, 65 must be spent in the classroom learning nursing theory, and the other 55 must be spent in a local health care facility practicing hands-on care under the supervision of a licensed nurse. The other route to becoming a CNA is to be enrolled in a licensed practical nurse or registered nurse training program. Student nurses can waive training if they have taken a Fundamentals of Nursing course and have completed at least 32 hours of clinical care.
CNA students must be at least 18 years old; some schools may require a high school diploma or GED for training. Others may administer an initial competency examination before accepting students to ensure that potential students have basic reading skills. They will need a complete immunization record as well as a recent negative tuberculosis screening and doctor’s physical examination stating that the student can meet the physical requirements of a CNA. Students must have the ability to be on their feet for long periods and to lift 40 pounds. Students must also undergo a national criminal background check, have two sets of fingerprints taken and have a clean drug test.
The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services oversees the CNA competency examination. The test consists of two parts, which are a knowledge test and a skills test. Both sections must be passed before the individual will be placed on the Nurse Aide Registry.
The knowledge examination consists of 72 multiple-choice questions to be completed with pencil and paper. Applicants may instead request to take this section orally. An oral examination is completed with the help of a reader who will read each question to the tester twice. The oral examination includes a second part, which requires the tester to demonstrate writing information on a flowsheet to show that he or she will be able to handle the reading duties of a CNA.
The second examination section is the skills test, which is performed in front of a Nurse Aide Evaluator. The tester will perform a series of CNA tasks on a volunteer actor. First, he or she will demonstrate proper hand washing before demonstrating four additional tasks that will be chosen at random on testing day.
Students will be notified whether or not they have passed by mail approximately 14 days after the test. Those who have failed will need to retake the section that they failed. The test must be successfully completed at least two years from the end of training and in three or fewer attempts to avoid having to retrain. Testing fees vary, and the contracted testing agent should be contacted for current fees.
CNAs moving to West Virginia from out-of-state may be able to apply for reciprocity if they meet several requirements. They must have completed a training course that is on par with the number of hours and materials covered in West Virginia and must have passed their previous state’s competency evaluation. They will need to provide a complete employment history for the past three years. In addition, their out-of-state certifications must be active and in good standing without any complaints of patient abuse or neglect, and their certifications must never have lapsed for over 24 months. If each of these qualifications is met, CNAs can waive a West Virginia training program and skip to the competency evaluation. Competency evaluation fees will apply.
West Virginia CNAs must renew their certifications every 24 months to remain active in the registry. To be eligible to renew, CNAs must have worked at least an eight-hour shift in the past 24 months and must have a license free from accusations of patient abuse, neglect or maltreatment. The state’s registry sends out a renewal packet a month or two before the expiration date. CNAs can renew online or can use the paper renewal form found in their renewal packets. Renewal is free for active CNAs. Those who do not work the required eight-hour shift will need to complete a refresher course and retake the competency examination to reregister.
Office of Health Facility
Licensure & Certification
408 Leon Sullivan Way
Charleston, WV 25301
Phone: (304) 558-0050
Fax: (304) 558-2515
|West Virginia University Hospitals||1 Medical Center Drive||Morgantown||WV||26506||304-598-4000||Website|
|Charleston Area Medical Center||501 Morris Street||Charleston||WV||25301||304-388-5432||Website|
|Beckley Arh Hospital||306 Stanaford Road||Beckley||WV||25801||304-255-3000||Website|
|Beckley Veterans Affairs Medical Center||200 Veterans Avenue||Beckley||WV||25801||304-255-2121||Website|
|Berkeley Medical Center||2500 Hospital Drive||Martinsburg||WV||25401||304-264-1000||Website|
|Bluefield Regional Medical Center||500 Cherry Street||Bluefield||WV||24701||304-327-1100||Website|
|Boone Memorial Hospital||701 Madison Avenue||Madison||WV||25130||304-369-1230||Website|
|Braxton County Memorial Hospital||100 Hoylman Drive||Gassaway||WV||26624||304-364-5156||Website|
|Broaddus Hospital||1 Healthcare Drive||Philippi||WV||26416||304-457-1760||Website|
|Cabell Huntington Hospital||1340 Hal Greer Boulevard||Huntington||WV||25701||304-526-2000||Website|
|Camc Teays Valley Hospital||1400 Hospital Drive||Hurricane||WV||25526||304-757-1700||Website|
|Camden-Clark Memorial Hospital||800 Garfield Avenue||Parkersburg||WV||26101||304-424-2111||Website|
|Cornerstone Hospital Of Huntington||2900 First Avenue, Two East||Huntington||WV||25702||304-399-2600||Website|
|Davis Memorial Hospital||Gorman Avenue and Reed Street||Elkins||WV||26241||304-636-3300||Website|
|Eye And Ear Clinic Of Charleston||1306 Kanawha Boulevard East||Charleston||WV||25301||304-343-4371||Website|
|Fairmont General Hospital||1325 Locust Avenue||Fairmont||WV||26554||304-367-7100||Website|
|Grafton City Hospital||500 Market Street||Grafton||WV||26354||304-265-0400||Website|
|Grant Memorial Hospital||117 Hospital Drive||Petersburg||WV||26847||304-257-1026||Website|
|Hampshire Memorial Hospital||363 Sunrise Boulevard||Romney||WV||26757||304-822-4561||Website|