Inservices (continuing education credit for CNA’s) are a requirement of renewal. In order to renew a CNA certification in Florida (and many other states), you must meet the following conditions:
- 1. work as a CNA for pay at least once in the 24 months leading up to your renewal AND
- 2. have completed one in-service hour for every month you were certified (24 hours if you were licensed for 24 months) AND
- 3. complete the renewal process and pay the associated fee
So, how do you get in-services? There are many ways to obtain in-service credit. I will just mention a few here to get you started:
EMPLOYER: Many employers offer monthly in-services for their CNA employees. You should check with your employer to determine if they offer this service. Often, in-service credit is offered during a monthly meeting where a certain topic of particular relevance to your clinical setting is discussed. For instance, a nursing home that has a high percentage of patients who are diabetic may discuss signs and symptoms of diabetes. Or a residential facility that has been experiencing an increase in resident falls may demonstrate the proper use of a gait belt. At the end of the discussion, a short quiz to determine comprehension must be given to award in-service credit. Only RNs may grant in-service credit, so if your facility does not employ an RN, this will not be an appropriate way to obtain your in-services. Keep any certificates that your employer gives you as proof of in-service credit.
ONLINE: This is probably the most convenient and cost-effective way to obtain your in-services. Go to any search engine and type in “CNA Inservices” or “CNA continuing education” and many relevant results will be displayed. Most charge a flat rate (i.e., $35) for an unlimited amount of in-service hours per year. After subscribing to the service, you will be taken to a page that lists all available topics for you to choose from. Read the material, take the test and print your certificate.
COMMUNITY COLLEGE: Many community colleges or other trade schools will offer continuing education for nurses and CNAs. You can check with your local schools to see what is offered in your community. These are traditionally offered in a classroom setting and tend to be more expensive.
ASK YOUR CO-WORKERS: Find out who your co-workers are using for their in-service requirements. You may find that word-of-mouth advertising can lead you in directions that you never expected or thought of.
There are certain topics that MUST be covered every renewal period. They are:
- Domestic Violence
- Medical Records Documentation/Legal aspects for Nursing assistants
- Resident Rights
- Communication with cognitively impaired clients
- CPR skills
- Medical error prevention and safety
The remainder of the topics for in-services are up to you. You are not required to submit copies of your in-service certificates when you renew, but you MUST keep them on file in case you are audited. If you are audited, you will be contacted and required to show proof of compliance with the renewal requirements.
Other states may have similar requirements. It is best to check with your state’s CNA registry for specific renewal information. You can find your state’s CNA registry by clicking on the link in the top menu bar for “CNA Registries”.
For general questions regarding Florida’s licensing or renewals, you may visit the Florida Board of Nursing’s website at www.Floridasnursing.gov or call 850-488-0595.