What Can A Certified Nursing Assistant Earn?

Being a CNA comes with a lot of advantage such as job security and entry into the nursing profession, one of the fastest growing and most stable professions at the moment. Becoming a CNA is a way for you to get your foot into the door of the nursing profession, and from there you will have plenty of room to grow and expand until you are a professional in the health care domain. An important thing that you may want to consider, however, is the CNA salary that you will be able to earn. This article contains all of the basic information about CNA pay. And should help you in your decision about whether or not you want to be a CNA as well as informing your choice about where you will work once you are a CNA.

Average CNA Salary Figures

Let’s consider first the national averages for certified nursing assistant salary. These of course are not a true reflection of what you can expect to earn in each individual state and city, but it does serve as a basic outline of what you are getting into with a nursing assistant job. The average hourly rate is about $8.37 to $14.34. CNAs can expect to earn an overtime CNA salary of around $7.93 to $21.54 an hour. In some instances CNAs are eligible for a bonus of anything between $0.00 and $810. This makes the average nursing assistant salary for a year around $17,555 to $31,988.

This however is not a conclusive analysis of a CNA salary. There are a number of factors that can affect CNA pay. These include things like:

  • The employer that you end up working for
  • The specific industry in which you choose to work as a CNA
  • Your gender
  • What level of CNA education you have managed to earn thus far
  • The exact location that you work in as different cities and different states pay a different certified nursing assistant salary

We will have a look at each of these factors in more detail later on in the article. If you are thinking about becoming a CNA based on the salary that you hope to earn you will need to have a close look at all of the different aspects that play a part in affecting the salary that you stand a chance of earning in your particular area. There are places where you can earn a very good CNA salary if you know where to look.

Certified Nursing Assistant Salary by Industry

Different places will pay you a different salary. For example, a nursing home will pay about $8.52 – $13.81 an hour, while healthcare pays around $8.58 – $14.47 an hour. Long-term care and rehabilitation come with a CNA pay of around $8.51 – $13.83, a hospital will pay around $8.87 – $14.99, and in home health care you can expect about $8.18 – $14.46.

As you can see there are a number of different industries that you can work in as a CNA. The CNA pay for each industry is also not bad. When it comes to finding work as a CNA there really is something for everyone as there are a wide variety of different options to choose form in terms of the location that you would most like to work in as a CNA. This allows you to choose a job based on the CNA salary as well as on the actual job that you would like to have and the location where you would like to work. As you can see there is a pay range in this regard, so you cannot be completely sure about how much you will earn in each industry, however the numbers given here are a fairly good indication of the certified nursing assistant salary that you can expect to earn.

CNA Salary By Gender

Gender also has a significant effect on your CNA pay:


  • Women make up 90% of the people employed as CNAs
  • Women earn an hourly rate of $9.32 – $12.23


  • Men make up only 10% of the people employed as CNAs
  • However, men earn a slightly higher hourly rate of $9.51 – $12.46

Unfortunately there still seem to be slight gender differences in the field of nursing, and these even affect the CNA salary that you can expect to earn. Men are fewer in number when t comes to this career, but at the same time they earn slightly more money. This is something that is slowly starting to equalise, however so for now you will just have to accept the inequalities as given.

As you can see both men and women stand a good chance of earning a decent salary if they are willing to go through the training and certification process needed in order to work in this field. There are a lot of advantages to working as a CNA and the CNA pay that you will then be eligible for is definitely one of the more persuasive aspects of being a CNA.

Nursing Assistant Salary By Employer

There are a number of different employers that offer work for CNAs, each of whom pay a slightly different CNA salary. Let us consider some of those employers now:

If you work for HCR Manor Care Inc you can expect a certified nursing assistant salary of about $8.93 – $12.61 an hour while those CNAs employed by Kindred Healthcare can expect CNA pay of around $8.79 – $13.66 an hour. At Golden Living Centers you can get a salary of about $8.73 – $14.06, at Life Care Centers of America you can expect to earn around $8.63 – $13.38, and when you work for Home Health and Hospice Care the average CNA pay is approximately $8.07 – $12.79. Those CNAs working for NHC Healthcare can expect a certified nursing assistant salary of about $7.54 – $13.09, while hose working at Maxim Healthcare Services Inc. can earn in the region of $8.05 – $15.00 an hour. At Nursing Centers you can earn about $8.06 – $12.76, at Sunrise Senior Living, Inc. you can earn about $8.64 – $13.03 and at HCR – ManorCare you can earn about $9.52 – $13.22.

The average CNA salary for hose working at Genesis Healthcare Corporation is in the region of $9.46 – $15.45 an hour, while those who are employed by Comfort Keepers can earn an average pay of about $8.04 – $10.34. At Emeritus, Assisted Living you can earn around $8.69 – $11.13 an hour while the average salary at Memorial Hospital is about $7.93 – $17.25. Those CNAs choosing to work at Care Centers can earn something like $9.17 – $14.30 an hour and those who work at Kindred Hospital can expect a certified nursing assistant salary of around $9.20 – $15.89 an hour. At The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society you can earn $8.86 – $12.85, at the Brightstar Healthcare LLC you can earn $9.06 – $12.48, at Healthsouth Rehabilitation Hospital you can earn $8.68 – $15.55, and at Sava Senior Care you can earn $7.80 – $13.51, which are all fairly good rates of CNA pay. For those CNAs employed by Sunbridge Care and Rehab the average CNA salary is around $7.96 – $14.88, and those working for Home Instead Senior Home Care can expect an average pay in the region of $7.44 – $13.09. At the Uhs-Pruitt Corporation CNAs get paid around $7.32 – $11.40, at Autumn Care they get about $8.21 – $12.59, at Bayada Nurses Inc they get approximately $8.10 – $13.18, and the average pay for Heath Nursing Care Center is around $7.15 – $13.69.

Working for Extendicare Health Services Incorporated gets you a salary of around $8.08 – $12.73 an hour and working at Lifecare Center should earn you something in the region of $8.69 – $15.05. Those working at Select Specialty Hospitals can earn a salary of about $10.07 – $16.34 and at Visiting Angels, Inc. you can earn around $7.70 – $12.28.

How Your Degree Affects Your Salary

Your level of education can have a significant effect on your CNA salary. Let us consider the effects that the most basic degrees can have on your pay:

  • If you have an Associate’s Degree you can earn about $8.70 – $14.79 an hour
  • If you have a Bachelor’s Degree you can earn about $8.41 – $14.45 an hour
  • If you only have a GED or High School Diploma you can earn about $8.23 – $14.74 an hour
  • If you have a High School Diploma you can earn around $8.18 – $14.96 an hour
  • If you have a Certificate (Cert), Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) you can earn about $8.65 – $14.42 an hour

As you can see it is better to get as high a qualification as you possibly can in order to stand a chance of earning a higher CNA salary. The higher your CNA pay the happier you are likely to be in your chosen career as a CNA. However if possible you should not base your entire decision about which qualification program to be involved in on the salary that you can earn. You should choose the program that will make you the happiest and that suits your needs and schedule better than the other programs that are available out there. Although the amount of money that you can expect to earn has to be one of your considerations, it should not be your primary consideration and you should think about which degree program to do carefully before making your final decision in this very important matter.

Cities That Pay The Most

As mentioned previously your location can affect how much you can expect to earn as a CNA. A nursing assistant salary can differ quite significantly from city to city. If you know which city you plan to work in once you are a qualified CNA you should take a bit of time to find out what the CNA pay options are for that city. There are definitely state differences to consider but what some people don’t realise is how much a salary can differ from city to city within the same state, so this is a consideration that you absolutely have to take into account when deciding where you plan to work as a CNA. The facts and figures are available online as well as from other sources, so look into the details carefully before making your final decision about where you want to work as a certified nursing assistant.

If you want to stand a chance of earning the highest nursing assistant salary possible you should try to get a job in one of the following cities:

  • St. Paul, Minnesota
  • San Francisco, California
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Washington, District of Columbia
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Phoenix, Arizona
  • San Jose, California
  • Fort Myers, Florida
  • Allentown, Pennsylvania
  • Sacramento, California
  • Denver, Colorado
  • Baltimore, Maryland
  • Portland, Oregon
  • Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Madison, Wisconsin
  • Portland, Maine
  • Mesa, Arizona
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Providence, Rhode Island

Those are all of the facts, figures and statistics for a salary that are currently available. With this information in mind you are now equipped to decide if becoming a CNA is the right thing for you. It should also help those who have already made this choice to decide where they will work in order to benefit from the best CNA possible. This is not a decision that should be made lightly or flippantly and requires a lot of thought as it will affect your future career options.

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