Cherokee Indian Hospital Authority launches free Certified Nursing Assistant Training Program

The Cherokee Indian Hospital Authority (CIHA) is excited to announce the launch of a free Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) certification program this summer. The program, aimed at addressing workforce shortages in healthcare, will run from May 13 through July 31 on the CIHA campus.


CNAs play a crucial role in patient care, assisting with activities of daily living and ensuring patient safety and comfort. The course will be taught on Mondays and Wednesdays from 8:30am to 3pm, providing flexibility for students.


“We are thrilled to offer this program to individuals interested in pursuing a career in healthcare,” said Janet Medford, Director of Nursing for Cherokee Indian Hospital Authority. “This program not only provides valuable training but also helps us address the growing need for skilled healthcare professionals in our community, especially with the opening of the new Tsali Care Center this fall.”


The first CNA training program participants will receive $15 per hour while in class and on clinical units, and all textbooks and workbooks will be provided at no charge. As part of the enrollment into the course, students will sign a contract agreeing that at the conclusion of the program, students will take the state CNA certification examination at no cost to them, and if they pass, they will be considered for employment at Cherokee Indian Hospital Authority. If participants are offered employment, they would then be expected to work a minimum of 6 months at Tsali Care Center.


The Nurse Aide I Training Program at CIHA is designed to provide entry-level students with the skills essential for providing patient care under the supervision of a Registered Nurse. At the end of the course, students will have the opportunity to sit for the state’s certification test to receive their C.N.A. credentials from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Division of Health Service Regulation Health Care Personnel Education and Credentialing Section.


The first certification program will be open to 10 students. To be eligible to apply, applicants must be at least 17 years or older, currently enrolled in high school or have earned their high school diploma or G.E.D., have a state-issued identification card or driver’s license.


To learn more about the program or to apply, please visit the CIHA HR Department or call 828.497.9163 ext 6503.

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