The Omnibus Reconciliation Act adopted by Congress in 1987 clearly directs nursing homes and licensed facilities throughout the United States to employ nursing aides who have successful Completed Nurse Aide Training and Competency Evaluation Program (NATCEP). It was not so prior to the adoption of federal OBRA regulations because until 1987 nursing assistants were allowed to work without completing formal Nurse Aide Training Program (NATP). The lack of quality of care and safety in the licensed facilities, together with consumer concerns prompted Congress to pass OBRA-87 regulations, consisting of Nursing Home Reform Act. The law mandates a number of standards and guidelines for both nursing homes and working nursing assistants.
The federal legislation has also prompted the state of New Jersey to establish NATCEP curriculum for new and working nursing aides. The state government requires individuals complete formal Long Term Care Facilities Training and CEP successfully and obtain CNA Certification in New Jersey, prior to their employment as entry-level nursing assistants in an Assisted Living Facility or a long-term care facility.
NJ Nurse Aide Training Program
NJ Long Term Care Facilities Training is 90 hours, of which 40 hours is re reserved for clinical hands-on experience in a long-term care facility, and 50-bedroom hours. The training program can be completed in the county vocational schools and county community colleges, or a long term care facility where nursing aides wish to work. The NJ Department of Health (NJDOH) is entrusted with the responsibility by the state government to approve the training programs in the state.
NJ CNA Exam
The next step towards certification a passing required NJ CEP consulting NJ CNA Written Test (90 minutes) and NJ CNA skills Test (60 minutes). Both tests are independent of each other. The applicant must take skills assessment first before challenging NJ Written Test, and if they pass skill evaluation test, they can proceed for a Written / Oral part of the Test. The cost of NJ CNA Written Test – English is $ 53 and NJ CNA Skills Test is $ 23.
PSI, a Testing Service State Contract Vendor, contracted by the NJ Department of Health (NJDOH) is responsible for administering the testing services in the state of NJ. PSI also manages and maintains NJ Nurse Aide & Personal Care Assistant Registry.
NJ CNA Certification Renewal
NJ DOH requires all CNAs to renew and update their status on the NJ Nurse Aide & Personal Care Assistant Registry, and complete the Fingerprint process. The testing vendor, PSI sends the renewal mail 45 days prior to the expiration of the Certification.
Certification Renewal Requirements
- Hold a current status License
- Performed minimum 7 hours in a licensed health care facility for pay within past 2 years.
- Certificate retained in good standing, not suspended or revoked.
- Completed fingerprint process and criminal background check prior to the Certification expiration.
Nursing is one of the noblest occupations, and nurses are a critical link between a healthcare facility and residents. The positions held by them also demand passion to serve and allay the sufferings of patients with humble quality care and safety, meeting patient's emotional and spiritual needs.