How to Become a CNA in Mississippi (A Complete 2023 Guide)

How to Become a CNA in Mississippi

What’s great about being a CNA in Mississippi is that it’s so easy to get certified. 

No 4-year course, no years of residency — just a few months of training and studying! 

But where do you start? 

What should you expect from your training? 

Where do you take the exam? 

Let’s find out in this complete guide on how to become a CNA in Mississippi. We’ll make sure to include all the details, so you have a roadmap through the whole process. 

Let’s begin!

How to Become a CNA in Mississippi – The 5 Steps

To become a CNA in Mississippi, you only need to go through 5 steps. These include:

  1. Choose a state-approved training program
  2. Meet the program prerequisites 
  3. Complete your CNA training
  4. Take and pass the NNAAP exam
  5. Get certified 

Let’s walk through the steps one by one. 

Step #1: Choose a State-Approved Training Program

To become a Certified Nurse Aide (CNA), you first need the proper education and training. Therefore, you need to enroll in a state-approved Nurse Aide training program. 

Click here to request a list of approved CNA programs in Mississippi

But you don’t just go for any state-approved program. You should also consider the following:

  • Training length
  • Training costs and other fees
  • Facility-based or non-facility-based program

Make sure the program you choose matches your needs and preferences. 

Step #2: Meet the Program Prerequisites

Each program provider in Mississippi will have its own requirements. To enroll in your chosen program, you need to meet those specific requirements. 

To give you an idea, here are a few common ones that you may encounter during your application:

  • Meet the age requirements – 16-18 years old and up depending on the CNA program
  • Provide proof of your high school diploma or GED from an accredited school
  • Take and pass a 2-step skin test
  • Provide full documentation of your current immunizations
  • Pass a criminal background check

Again, different providers have different prerequisites — so don’t forget to ask!

Step #3: Complete Your CNA Training

The State of Mississippi requires a minimum of 75 hours of CNA training. This should include several hours in a classroom and at least 16 hours of clinical skills training. 

Some of the things you will learn here are: 

  • Activities of daily living (ADL)
  • Client and patient rights
  • Legal and ethical behavior of CNAs
  • Teamwork abilities
  • Communication skills
  • Basic nursing services and techniques

Step #4: Take and Pass the NNAAP Exam

Once you complete your CNA training, it’s time to take the National Nurse Aide Assessment Program (NNAAP) exam. 

In Mississippi, the NNAAP is conducted by Credentia. 

Here’s how to register:

  1. Create an account with Credentia.
  1. Click on ‘Start A New Application’ and do the following:
    • Select your eligibility route 
    • Enter the necessary information
    • Upload the necessary documents 
    • Click on the submit button (you can click on ‘save as draft’ if you don’t want to submit your application just yet)
  1. Wait for your application to be approved. You can check the status in your Credentia account or wait for an approval email. 
  1. On your Credentia account, Click on ‘Register for Exam’ and do the following:
    • Select your exam type (written OR oral exam and skills exam)
    • Select the online exam and follow the prompts (if you prefer to take the NNAAP online)
    • If not, select a test center and follow the prompts. 
    • Pay the exam fee of $32 for the written/oral exam and $69 for the skills exam
  1. Receive your Authorization to Test Notice (you must bring this to the test center, along with 2 forms of identification, 3 pencils with erasers, your SSN, and a watch with a second hand).

Click here for a pictured guide on how to register, apply, and schedule with Credentia. 

What can you expect from the NNAAP?

Let’s take a look. 

  • Written Exam – On your written exam, you will be tasked to answer 70 multiple-choice questions in 2 hours. The coverage of your exam will derive from the skills and techniques you learned during your CNA training.
  • Oral Exam – If you choose to take the written exam orally, you will have to answer 60 multiple-choice questions, as well as 10 multiple-choice questions related to common terminology in long-term care facilities. You are also given 2 hours to complete everything. 
  • Skills Exam – The second part of your exam will be focused on the skills that you learned during your training. You will be asked to perform 5 nurse aide skills, including proper handwashing techniques. The other 4 skills that you will have to perform will be chosen at random on your exam day. 

Step #5: Get Certified

If you pass both parts of the NNAAP exam, Credentia will list your name in the Mississippi Nurse Aide Registry. 

You can go to the registry and see if your name is listed to start practicing in your field. 

Congratulations!

You are now a certified nurse aide in Mississippi.

Frequently Asked Questions About Becoming a CNA in Mississippi

Before we end, let’s go over a few FAQs that may help you during your application process and through your new career. 

How many times can I retake the NNAAP exam in Mississippi?

You can retake the NNAAP exam in Mississippi up to 3 times. If you fail all 3 attempts, you will be required to re-enroll in another state-approved training program. 

Can CNAs certified in other states work in Mississippi?

Yes, CNAs from other states can apply to work as nurse aides in Mississippi through reciprocity.

Click here for the full process

Important: Application for Reciprocity in Mississippi is only available to CNAs who are currently registered in their state’s Registry.

What happens if my Certification for Reciprocity gets denied?

If your Reciprocity Application gets denied, then you will have to take and pass the CNA competency exam in Mississippi. 

You will only be allowed one attempt to pass both the written/oral exam and the skills exam. 

If you fail either part, then you will have to enroll in a Mississippi state-approved CNA training program. And once again, you have to take the licensure exam right after.

Does Mississippi allow online computer-based Nurse Aide training?

No, the State of Mississippi does not allow online training for nurse aides. However, there are evening and weekend classes available to accommodate working students. 

Conclusion

And that was how to become a CNA in Mississippi. 

Pretty easy, right?

As long as you carefully make your way through the 5 steps, you’ll soon be on your way to being a certified nurse aide in Mississippi. 

So what are you waiting for?

Go ahead and get started!

Good luck!

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