Promoting and protecting the health and safety of all Idahoans

Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA)

The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) of 1987 requires Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs) and Nursing Facilities (NFs) to use as nurse aides any individuals who have successfully completed a nurse aide training and competency evaluation program (NATCEP) or competency evaluation program (CEP) approved by the State. 
Each state must maintain a Registry of all Certfied Nursing Assistants (CNAs).  This registry contains information on whether an individual has a current CNA certificate.  Employers are required to verify currency of a CNAs certificate at the time of employment and upon renewal. 

Frequently asked questions about the Idaho CNA registry may be found below.



Certified Nurse Aides (CNAs) are not licensed in the State of Idaho. Therefore, there are no rules governing the scope of practice for CNAs.  CNAs are referred to as Unlicensed Assistive Personnel (UAP) in the Board of Nursing administrative rules.  CNAs typically work under the direction of a licensed nurse.  The Idaho Board of Nursing does have rules concerning a licensed nurse delegating nursing functions to the UAP. To view the specific portion of the Board of Nursing rules dealing with Unlicensed Assistive Personnel (UAP), please see pages 40 and 41, IDAPA at IDAPA

No, at this time there are no fees to process any forms or certifications with the Idaho Certified Nurse Aide Registry.

You may contact one of the schools nearest your location and they will be able to provide you with information regarding cost, schedules, and locations. 

•  College of Western Idaho, Nampa, Idaho – (208) 562-3000

•  College of Southern Idaho, Twin Falls, Idaho – (208) 732-6701

•  College of Eastern Idaho, Idaho Falls, Idaho – (208) 524-3000

•  Idaho State University, Pocatello, Idaho – (208) 282-3372

•  Lewis-Clark State College, Lewiston, Idaho – (208) 792-2059

•  North Idaho College, Workforce Training Center, Post Falls, Idaho – (208) 769-3333

Yes. Idaho CNA Registry policy states that criteria for challenging the CNA test includes "Successful completion of one (1) semester of an accredited nursing school program as evidenced by a transcript of required nursing courses (not pre-requisites)." 

The transcript must verify that the applicant has successfully completed a basic nursing course, such as Nursing 101. Courses such as English, Nutrition, Human Anatomy and Physiology, etc, will not meet the criteria to challenge the CNA exam. 

You must provide a copy of your 1st semester transcripts in a letter to our office requesting approval to test. An “Approval to Test” letter will then be issued upon successful review of your request allowing you to take the Skills and Written test.

It is 120 hours.  This includes 80 hours of classroom instruction and 40 hours of clinical instruction.

You may contact the Idaho Nurse Aide Registry to obtain a transfer/reciprocity form or simply print one out as it is found at the top right of this page, under Forms.  Fill out the top portion of the form and then send it to the State you are transferring from; so they can verify your status on their registry.  They will then forward this form to the Idaho Nurse Aide Registry.  There is no fee for this transaction.  Please note that in transferring to Idaho from another state you are not giving up your current certification in your home state; you are simply adding Idaho as a state where you are certified.  If you are not current in your home state and cannot renew your certification but are in good standing, you can obtain an "Approval to Test" letter allowing you to take both the skills and written tests to be placed on the registry here in Idaho. 

No; these training courses do not meet the OBRA criteria in Idaho for what must be covered in a CNA class. OBRA (Omnibus Reconciliation Act), passed by Congress in 1987, outlines the standards and requirements for trained Nurse Aides.

Yes. You will need to contact the Nurse Aide Registry and if you are current and in good standing we will issue you a replacement.

There is no fee for this service. We recommend that you keep your card in a secure, accessible location, as many employers require proof that you are indeed current and in good standing before hiring you.

You will need to contact the Nurse Aide Registry of the state you wish to transfer to and they will assist you with their transfer process.

Some states do require a fee for transferring and there are different prerequisites in each state required for completing the transfer process.


Mailing Address:
Bureau of Facility Standards
CNA Registry
PO Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720-0009
Physical Address:
3232 W Elder Street
Boise, ID 83705
Office Phone:
(208) 334-6620
Office Fax:
(208) 334-6629
(800) 748-2480

The CNA forms found on this page require Adobe Acrobat Reader© version 5.0, or newer, to open.  Adobe Reader© is available as a free download.  These forms may be completed on-line, but must then be printed and mailed, or faxed, to the Idaho CNA Registry section.  The forms may also be printed and completed manually, but must still be returned either by mail or fax to the Idaho CNA Registry.

Changes to CNA Certification Checks

Changes to use of CNA verification activities:
  • SSNs are masked upon entry for search
  • DOB is now required when requesting a search by SSN
  • Captcha is now required

Got feedback about our website? Help us make it better by completing a survey. It'll only take a couple of minutes.