CNA Exam and Certification Minnesota

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The Nursing Assistant Registry in Minnesota, maintained by the Minnesota Department of Health, lists the names of nursing assistants who meet state and federal requirements to work in nursing homes. For placement on the registry, you must successfully complete an approved nurse aide program and pass the competency evaluation, or successfully challenge the test, or apply for reciprocity if you’re in good standing on the Nurse Aide Registry in another state. Employers must check the Registry to verify that a prospective employee meets the competency evaluation requirements to provide care in a nursing home or certified board care home. However, an employer may hire a nurse assistant student (someone enrolled in an approved training program at the time of hire) or an individual who has successfully completed nurse assistant training and competency evaluation but is not yet listed on the Registry. Nurse assistant students employed in a facility must complete the competency test to get listed on the Registry within four months of hire.

CNA Classes in MN:

How to Apply for the NNAAP Exam Minnesota

Graduates of a nursing assistant program in Minnesota can apply for nursing assistant certification through one of four routes. Graduates of an approved nursing assistant/health aide program can apply for certification as an NA/HHA after taking the NA/HHA Exam. A test-out option is also available for nursing assistant candidates.

Route 1 – Nursing Assistant Candidates

You could apply for the NNAAP Written (or Oral) Exam and the Skills Evaluation if you completed a state-approved nursing assistant program within the past two years.

Route 2 – Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide Candidate

Apply for the NA/HHA Written (or Oral) Examination and the Skills Evaluation if you completed a state-approved nursing assistant/home health aide training program within the past year. This option leads to certification as an NA/HHA.

Route 3 – Home Health Aide Candidate

If you’re listed on the Minnesota Nurse Aide Registry and successfully complete a home health aide program, you can take the NA/HHA for home health aide certification.

Route 4 – Test-Out Candidate

Apply to challenge the exam if you do not meet the eligibility requirements above. Nurse assistants trained in another country, CNAs from another state who do not qualify for reciprocity, and student nurses and graduate nurse candidates are just some examples of candidates who can challenge the exam. Use training program code 77777 on the application.

Use the following guidelines to schedule the exam:

  • Complete the Minnesota Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide application available at your training provider or test site.
  • Provide your Social Security Number on the application- the number will be your certificate number on the registry. Include correct identifying information, such as your name, birth date, address, and phone number to receive updates from the registry.
  • Place the completed application, appropriate fee, and required documents in an envelope and take to the test site on your scheduled exam date. Some test sites require payment beforehand.
  • Pearson Vue will withhold your score if your application is incomplete.
  • Request special accommodation online if you qualify under the Americans with Disabilities Act. You must have a documented disability and provide appropriate documentation with the request.

Contact your individual test site to determine if walk-in testing is available. Arrive at the test site early and walk with the completed application, documents of eligibility, and the fee in addition to proper identification.

Exam Costs

There are two different fees to take the test: An Administrative Fee, paid to the facility for administering the exam and the NNAAP and NA/HHA Exam Fee.

Contact the test site as the administration fee varies by provider. The following is a list of established fees for the NNAAP and NA/HHA exams.

  • NNAAP Written Exam and Skills Evaluation – $64
  • NNAAP Oral Exam and Skills Evaluation– $64
  • NA/HHA Written Exam and Skills Evaluation – $64
  • NA/HHA Oral Examination and Skills Evaluation – $64
  • Written (or Oral) Examination retest – $42
  • Skills Evaluation retest – $22

Pay for both the written or oral test and the skills test the first time you take the NNAAP or the NA/HHA exam.

If you’re employed at a Medicare/Medicaid nursing facility, your employer must pay the exam and training fee under federal law. Acceptable forms of payment are money orders, certified check, state-approved payment voucher, or company check made out to Pearson Vue Processing Center. Personal checks are not accepted. All fees are non-refundable.

NNAAP Exam Overview Minnesota

Both parts of the NNAAP Exam will be administered on the same day. You must pass both the Written (or Oral) Exam and the Skills Evaluation to receive a certificate and placement on the Washington Nurse Aide Registry.

The Written Exam

The Evaluator will give instructions for taking the 2-hour multiple-choice exam. Both the NNAAP and the NA/HHA contain 70 multiple-choice questions. Candidates are not allowed to go beyond the allotted two hours for the exam. Questions are listed in the test booklet, and you’ll provide your responses on the answer sheet – markings in the test booklet do not count towards your final score.

The new outline for the test, based on the findings from the 2014 Job Analysis and Knowledge, Skill, and Ability Study of Nurse Aides, goes into effect from January 2016. Ten of the items from the 70 multiple-choice items are not scored as they’re used for collecting statistical information.

The questions are categorized into three main categories; physical care skills, psychosocial care skills, and the role of the nurse aide.

The Oral Exam

Request the Oral Exam as a substitute to the Written Exam if you have a reading disability or speak English as a second language. The questions will be delivered on cassette tape, and you’ll mark your responses on the answer sheet. Complete Part II: Examination Types and Fees on the application and contact the test center to schedule a date. The exam contains two sections – you must pass both to pass the exam. The first part contains 60 multiple-choice questions and the second part contains 10 multiple-choice questions to test your ability to speak a minimum amount of English based on your recognition of common words used in the industry.

The subject matter for the Oral exam is the same as the Written Exam.

The Skills Exam

Your clinical skills will be under evaluation during the Clinical Exam. In a setting similar to the work setting, you’ll perform five skills randomly selected from the NNAAP skills. The exam is approximately 30 minutes. The Evaluator will rate your performance – you must perform all five skills correctly to pass the evaluation. “Provides Catheter Care” will always be one of the skills as required by the state. A full listing of the NNAAP skills is available in the Candidate Handbook. The list includes the Critical Element Step, in bold type, that you must perform correctly to pass the skill. In addition to completing the Critical Element Step, you must perform enough steps to meet the passing standard for each skill.

Another candidate will play the role of the “client” while you perform the skills. Similarly, you will be expected to volunteer for another candidate’s Skills Evaluation. The NAE will provide instructions for your role before the clinical exam begins. Dress appropriately in flat, slip-on shoes with enclosed toes and a loose-fitting top with short sleeves and loose-fitting pants that can be rolled up.

What To Bring To The Exam

For walk-in test sites, you must take your completed application, documents, and test fees. Registration begins 30 minutes before the exam, so arrive early for both parts of the exam.

The exam fee is non-refundable if you arrive late and the Evaluator prohibits you from entering the test.

Two forms of valid identification are necessary. Both IDs should bear your signature, and one should have a recent photo. Examples of official identification are a driver’s license, passport, state-issued ID card, signed social security card, and military ID. Photocopies of your ID are not acceptable.

You must also take:

  • A watch with a second hand.
  • Three #2 pencils (sharpened) and eraser.

Study aids and personal belongings are not permitted in the exam room. Cellular phones, beepers, and other electronic devices must be turned off during the test.

Receiving Your Scores

The score report will be available shortly after the Evaluator faxes your answer sheet for scoring. The official score report will indicate whether you passed or failed the Written (or Oral) exam. A separate report will be available for the Skills exam.

If technical difficulties prevent the Evaluator from sending a fax, the answer sheet will be mailed for hand scoring and the report will be mailed to your address within 5 to 7 business days. You must retest only for the part of the exam you failed. Take the official Score Report and another examination fee to the test site. If you fail the Clinical Skills or Written (Oral) exam more than three times, you must take or repeat a state-approved training program before you apply to retest.

Contact the Registry

MN Department of Health
Nurse Aide Registry
PO Box 64501
St. Paul, MN 55164
(800) 397-6124
(651) 215-8705

Pearson Vue
Minnesota Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide Program
PO Box 13785
Philadelphia, PA 19101-3785
(800) 274-0504


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