Intalere Member Best Practice Spotlight – Certified Nurse Aide Training Program for Arbutus Park Retirement Community


Arbutus Park Retirement Community (APRC) had a shortage of qualified applicants to fill open positions for Certified Nurse Aides (CNAs), which was discovered to be a regional and national issue.


APRC created a CNA Training Program that would not only benefit APRC, but the community as well. An in-house training instructor with previous experience instructing CNA training programs was selected from among current staff. APRC partnered with a local vocational school for the use of their classroom and clinical laboratory. Once accepted into the program, applicants are hired by APRC as Residential Care Aides (RCAs) so they can earn income while attending classes, and upon obtaining their certification at the conclusion of the program, wages are increased. APRC funds the cost of the class, testing and certification fees so there is no financial burden on the applicants.


Since the inception of the program in July 2018, two classes have been held with 18 of the 19 applicants successfully obtaining their CNA license. The newly licensed CNAs helped accomplish the primary goal of filling open CNA vacancies, which has had a positive effect on cutting back overtime costs, improving staff morale and reducing call bell response times for residents. Retention of the graduates has been strong with approximately 90% currently employed by the facility.

About Arbutus Park Retirement Community

Arbutus Park Retirement Community is a Continuing Care Retirement Community located in Johnstown, Pa. Its community is comprised of a 141-bed skilled nursing  

facility, personal care facility and over 80 independent residences. The company’s mission is to provide quality care and services while remaining an independent, non-profit and faith-based organization.

Check out the project video and view the Arbutus Park Retirement Community page in the 2019 Intalere Best Practices Compendium.

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