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CNA vs. STNA – Are Both the Professions Actually Different?

Both the terms CNA and STNA are meant for the same professionals. CNA stands for Certified Nurse Assistants while STNA is short form for State Tested Nurse Aides. In the state of Ohio, CNAs are called STNAs. Read this article to know more about the certification requirements, program and required qualifications for nursing assistants and STNAs.

1. Education

To be able to work as a CNA or STNA, students are required to complete a high school diploma or must possess GED (General Education Development) certificate.

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2. Program

Nurse assistants are required to undergo at least 75 hours of program which includes theoretical and practical portions, from a program school which is accredited by the State Department of Health. The important topics which are covered in the CNA classes are human physiology, anatomy and psychology, basic nursing skills, safety measures, first aid, patient’s right, etc.

3. Certification

You must qualify a nurse aide exam conducted by the concerned state to become a CNA or STNA.

4. Working Environment

Certified nurse assistants have bright job prospects, and they can apply for jobs in nursing homes, hospitals, day care centers, rehabilitation centers, residential care facilities, etc. Nurse aides normally remain busy throughout the day and have a very busy schedule. Only those candidates who have good physical stamina, patience, compassion, and willingness to put forth themselves to work for long hours should pursue the profession of a certified nursing assistant or STNA.

5. Job Duties and Responsibilities

STNAs and CNAs ought to shoulder and fulfill the following responsibilities and duties:

  • Looking after the nutritional requirements of the patients.
  • Administering medicines to the patients.
  • Assisting bedridden patients in the movement.
  • Measuring vital signs such as temperature, sugar, blood pressure, respiratory rate, etc.
  • Maintaining the medical records of the patients.
  • Informing the medical condition of the clients to the supervisory nurse or doctor.
  • Ensuring hygiene and other physical and psychological needs of the patients.
  • Cleaning, maintaining and sterilizing of the medical equipments.


6. Salary

In October 2017, as per payscale.com, the average annual income of STNAs fluctuated from $20,356 to $30,152 while the hourly wages was between $9.16 and $19.94.

On the other hand, CNAs were reported to earn an average hourly income of $13.29 and mean annual salary of $27,650 (as per the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of May 2016).

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