With the healthcare industry adding new jobs at an unprecedented pace across the country, there are plenty of openings for individuals who wish to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) in Mississippi.

A nurse aide or nursing assistant is a basic healthcare career professional who performs a variety of direct patient care functions at medical facilities that include nursing homes, hospitals and long-term care facilities (LTCs). Among those who are interested in advancing into the healthcare profession, this continues to be a good entry-level option since its education requirements are comparatively low and the work provides good opportunities for exposure to other positions.

How to become a CNA in Mississippi

In the state of Mississippi Certified Nursing Assistants are under the control of the Mississippi State Department of Health: Bureau of Health Facilities Licensure and Certification. To be a nurse assistant one has to go through a process of training and examination. They must complete CNA programs unless they have prior nursing training.

What’s the process to become certified in Mississippi?

Becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant in Mississippi takes these steps:

Step 1 – Have at a minimum a HS diploma or G.E.D. equivalent

Earning your high school diploma is one of the basic foundations to finding work in any type of specialized position. Working in the medical field is no different. Even in the cases when it is possible to gain a position without your high school diploma, the jobs often don’t offer much in the way of salary or chances for advancement.

While looking for a nursing assistant certification program, you can expect to find that most schools require trainees to have a diploma or G.E.D. before registration. That being said, if you’re planning on working in medical care, it is a wise decision to accomplish this worthwhile step.

Step 2 – Enroll in a state of Mississippi approved CNA program

The organization responsible for regulating nurse assisting training programs in Mississippi is the Mississippi State Department of Health: Bureau of Health Facilities Licensure and Certification. For you to become able to test for certification, you will need to first complete a program that is approved by this body.

Choosing the right course for your particular situation typically involves a few considerations. Consider the following features when comparing a program against another:

  • Take training approved by Mississippi State Department of Health
  • Be sure to make sure and see that least 70% of program grads passed the NNAAP
  • See that schools fit your personal schedule
  • Check your financial budget and make smart decisions about financial future and costs

Locate and attend an approved MS CNA training

When you get to that great point of finishing a Mississippi State Department of Health: Bureau of Health Facilities Licensure and Certification approved CNA training program, you become eligible to take the NNAAP test. Below is a list of the best approved CNA programs in Mississippi.

All the Approved CNA Training Programs in Mississippi

Antonelli College-Hattiesburg 1500 N 31st Ave, Hattiesburg, Mississippi 39401

East Mississippi Community College 1512 Kemper Street, Scooba, Mississippi 39358

Hinds Community College 608 Hinds Boulevard, Raymond, Mississippi 39154

Jones County Junior College 900 South Court Street, Ellisville, Mississippi 39437

Meridian Community College 910 Hwy 19 N, Meridian, Mississippi 39307

Northwest Mississippi Community College 4975 Hwy 51 N, Senatobia, Mississippi 38668

Southwest Mississippi Community College 1156 College Dr, Summit, Mississippi 39666

Step 3 – Meet all the state level training requirements

Graduating from an authorized nursing assistant class is crucial, as you won’t be able to move forward to the next step unless you have done so. To be able to go forward with the process, Mississippi mandates that prospective nursing assistants complete a total of 75 hours of classroom study and 16 hours in a clinical setting.

You cannot be approved to take the NNAAP unless you have finished all of the required hours.

Step 4 – Pass the NNAAP Examination

Certified nursing assistants in Mississippi must pass the NNAAP to receive their certification. The exam is made up of a written part and a clinical section.

On the timed, written section of the test, you will be required to answer multiple-choice problems on what you learned in your program. An evaluator will direct you during the clinical section of the examination, during which you’ll have to show the basic skills you’ll need while on the job. A passing score on each part of the exam is necessary in order to become certified.

PearsonVue is the national assessment provider that administers the test to future nursing assistants in the state. Regular monthly exam sites in Mississippi are typically in the metropolitan areas noted here. You should reference the provider’s website for schedules.

The full examination costs $101. It will be a cost of $32 to retake the oral or the written exams and a cost of $69 to retake the skills exam.

Step 5 – Get listed on the Mississippi Nurse Aide Registry

The final step in becoming able to apply to work as a CNA in Mississippi is getting your name added to the MS Nurse Aide Registry. Managed by the Mississippi State Department of Health: Bureau of Health Facilities Licensure and Certification, this is a checklist of all nursing assistants that are approved to work in the state. State regulations require that your name need to be on this record before becoming employed. Fortunately, you typically won’t need to do anything at all in order for this to happen.

Once you have passed the NNAAP, the examination provider will notify the registry about your brand new status. The standard wait time to have your name included on the list is a few weeks at the most in Mississippi.

Should you have questions about the registry, or your standing on it, you should contact it personally with the info supplied below.

Mississippi Pearson VUE
MS Nurse Aide Registry
PO Box 822749

CNA jobs and salary in Mississippi

The demand for nursing assistants is at historic levels in not just Mississippi, but across the whole U.S. Through the year 2024, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 11% growth in new job opportunities for nursing assistants in Mississippi. Common workplaces are: hospitals, nursing homes and general care facilities. Certain government facilities also hire nursing assistants, nurse aides and orderlies.

As mentioned earlier, a number of of these positions might be ideal starting off points for careers in nursing (e.g. RNs or LPNs).

Below is a listing of the major towns and cities in Mississippi and further data on nursing assistant salary by location and county.

LocationPay TypeLowMedianHigh
United StatesHourly$9.64$12.78$18.22
Yearly$20,040 $26,590 $37,900
MississippiHourly$8.03$9.97$13.35
Yearly$16,690 $20,730 $27,770
Memphis, TN-MS-AR MSAHourly$9.18$12.26$15.83
Yearly$19,090 $25,500 $32,940
Gulfport-Biloxi, MS MSAHourly$9.72$11.85$17.67
Yearly$20,220 $24,650 $36,760
Jackson, MS MSAHourly$8.27$10.47$13.84
Yearly$17,200 $21,780 $28,790
Southeast Mississippi BOSHourly$8.08$9.91$11.94
Yearly$16,810 $20,600 $24,840
Northwest Mississippi BOSHourly$7.92$9.49$12.27
Yearly$16,480 $19,730 $25,520
Hattiesburg, MS MSAHourly$7.82$9.43$12.76
Yearly$16,270 $19,610 $26,530
Northeast Mississippi BOSHourly$7.91$9.29$12.10
Yearly$16,450 $19,310 $25,170
Southwest Mississippi BOSHourly$7.79$9.06$11.96
Yearly$16,200 $18,850 $24,880