Certified Nursing Assistant

Differences Between the Nursing Assistant Types in Arizona

Alyssa Jane
Mar 8, 2023
CNA class held at AZMTI Arizona Medical Training Institute

Now that you know How to become a CNA in Arizona, it’s time to learn the types of Nursing Assistants in this state. Don’t worry if you haven’t made a decision yet. This blog will help you know the similarities and differences between CNAs and LNAs in Arizona. 

Similarities Between CNAs and LNAs in Arizona

They both need to complete a state-approved program 

Whether you’re planning to become a CNA or LNA, you still need to finish a state-approved training program. There is no special or additional training program for either nursing assistant type. 

They both need to pass the same state exams 

CNAs and LNAs must work hard to pass the same State Board of Nursing exam to receive their certificate or license.  

They both renew their credentials every two years
To stay up-to-date with their credentials in their respective fields, CNAs and LNAs must renew them every two years.

The credentials transfer the same to a new state
The endorsement process is similar for both nursing assistant types. An out-of-state endorsement fee of $50 is due to a CNA or LNA who wants to transfer their license.

Differences between CNAs and LNAs in Arizona

After passing the exam, you will automatically have the CNA status in the registry. According to the Arizona State Board of Nursing, all certificates and licenses are paperless. 

From here, you are a CNA. Congratulations! 

To become an LNA you must submit an application, pay the fees, and complete a one-time fingerprint background check to get a license. You can apply for a license online by creating an account through the nurse portal. 

When you apply, you must also submit an electronic fingerprint clearance or a fingerprint card  for the background check. Complete your application and pay the fees first to get instructions on completing your electronic fingerprints. 

Once this process is complete, you will receive your official licensing to be an LNA in six to eight weeks! 

Fees for LNAs and CNAs

CNAs in Arizona are not required to pay any fees.

Meanwhile, LNAs are required to pay the following fees:

  • Initial application fee to become an LNA - $50
  • Background check or fingerprinting fee for LNA application- $50
  • Renewal fee of LNA license - $50

Renewal Process

For license renewal, CNAs can renew their certification if they have worked 8 hours in the past two years. 

LNAs will be required to work 160 hours in two years plus pay the fees. Employers have a form to complete so CNAs and LNAs can renew their licenses. 

AZ Board of Nursing Jurisdiction 

The registry lists any practice issues for CNAs; however, the Arizona Board of Nursing has little control over CNAs regarding practice concerns.  They may look into cases of abuse, neglect, or misappropriation of property with another state agency called the Office of Inspector General (OIG). 

For LNAs, any practice concerns or issues are investigated and settled by the Board of Nursing, and they also have the power to make it known to the public. Arizona State Board of Nursing has full jurisdiction over LNAs.

 Registration and background checks

 Must file forms with the state for additional licensing.

 Required background check and fingerprint clearance.

 Listed in the registry as soon as passing the state test.

 Does not need to provide fingerprints or a background check to the Arizona State Board of Nursing.

 Arizona State Board of Nursing jurisdiction  Full Jurisdiction  Limited Jurisdiction

 Initial application fee to become an LNA - $50

 Background check or fingerprinting fee for LNA application- $50

 Renewal fee of LNA license - $50

 No fees
 Renewal Process  Worked 160 hours in two years  Worked 8 hours in two years

Verdict: Is it CNA or LNA? Which path should I take?

We’ve reached out to the Arizona Board of Nursing for insight into the difference between the NA types and how this can affect you as an aspiring CNA or LNA. LNAs and CNAs do the same thing, but let’s cover some important points that may help you choose your path. 

CNAs in Arizona are in demand by nursing homes and alike. Employers are open to hiring CNAs because LNAs and CNAs take the same training and exams. They can also perform the same functions in their jobs with the same skills and knowledge of caring for their patients.

LNAs, on the other hand, have more background checks run by the Board. According to the Arizona State Board of Nursing, some hospitals prefer hiring LNAs knowing they are clear of criminal history.

If you’re considering attending a nursing school, some schools prefer accepting LNAs for admission.

Regardless of whether you choose to pursue a career as a CNA or an LNA, they both have equal salary ranges.

Now that we’ve laid out some facts about being a CNA or LNA in the real world, it’s up to you to decide. Is your priority getting hired as soon as possible as a CNA and practicing what you’ve learned? Or do you want a higher chance of working in a hospital as an LNA? Take some time to think and set out your plan on how to thrive in the healthcare field!

Find top-rated phlebotomy training programs near you.
Get started today
Find top-rated CNA training programs near you.
Get started today
Written by
Alyssa Jane

Alyssa Jane is part of the customer success team at Dreambound. She works with students, training providers, and employers, helping them have a smooth customer journey. She is also an ESL tutor and Licensed Psychometrician. She is fond of traveling, photography, and discovering new restaurants.

Easiest way to get certified.
Today is the day to get that certification you've always wanted. Enroll in a top-rated, state-approved training program in just a few minutes.
Get started now