The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) of 1987 was passed to improve the quality of care in the Nursing Facilities (NFs) and Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs). OBRA requires nursing assistants to complete Nurse Aide Training Program (NATP) of 75 hours, and pass the Competency evaluation Program (CEP) to be eligible to assist residents with ADL and direct patient cares.
The legislation further requires all states to include minimum OBRA education standards in their training programs, and maintain a state Nurse Aide registry to list all certified nurse aides who successfully meet the OBRA Nurse Aide Training and Competency Evaluation (NATCEP) requirements, and earn CNA Certification proving their competency. Federal regulations also direct the licensed, and skilled nursing facilities to employ only these certified nursing aides for direct patient cares who are listed on the Registry in good standing.
The state of Idaho has also included federal provisions in the state Nurse Aide Training and Competency Evaluation Program. The state law requires nursing students to complete the state-approved training program, and pass the copetency test before applying for an entry-level nursing assistant job. The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare prohibits uncertified nursing assistants from performing nursing assistant-related tasks in the state. The Department is also responsible for overseeing the inclusion of federal provisions in the state-approved CNA certification program.
Idaho Nurse Aide Training Program
The state-approved Nurse Aide training Program is 120 hours in length, more than 35 hours of what OBRA requires, and includes 40 hours of clinical training, and 80 hours of theoretical classroom education and lab trainings. The nursing students complete their clinical hands-on experience in a long-term care facility under the direction and supervision of a RN or LPN. The training program prepares unlicensed assistive personnel (UAP) in nursing and nursing assistant-related tasks. On successful completion of the training program, nursing students are eligible to challenge the Idaho CNA Certification Test.
Idaho Competency Evaluation Test
The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare has sought the services of a nationally known testing vendor, Prometric to schedule, administer, and score the competency testing. The Department-approved competency testing consists of two independent tests, a Written/Knowledge Test, and a Skills demonstration Test. The Written Test content features 60 questions to be completed in 90-minutes.
The skills test is a competency assessment tool with the Department for evaluating the direct patient care skills of nursing assistants. The skills test contains five (5) performance-based skills. The testing candidates will have to demonstrate the skills on a client or a volunteer, and they are scored on the basis of each demonstrated skill. The successful performance of all five skills passes the test.
The nursing students who fail the CNA exam on their first shot can attempt the test thrice within 24-months, but if they fail to pass the test even in three chances they will have to enrol, attend, and complete the training program once again to be eligible for retesting. The successful candidates are awarded CNA Certification in Idaho, and listed on the state Nurse Aide Registry. Once certified, CNAs assist long-term care patients with the activities of daily livings (ADL), and provide long-term cares to patients in varied settings The Department of Health and Welfare regulates the Idaho Nurse Aide registry.
Idaho CNA Certification Renewal
CNA Certification in Idaho is valid for 2 years. Certified Nursing aides must renew the Certification before it expires on the Registry. The Renewal requirements include performance of 8-hours nursing, and nursing-related tasks for compensation in the past 2 years.