Washing Hands Skill for CNA

CNA Hand washing skill










The most important skill for the CNA exam has to be hand washing.  This is not only important for CNA’s, but for anyone.  Washing your hands is the number one way to control infection in the workplace and keep microorganisms from spreading.  This also protects you.

Everyone that takes the CNA skills test will have to perform this skill.  The examiner will not allow ANY mistakes during this skill.  This will also be the first skill you will take out of the five.


  • Make sure your watch is loose, so that you can slide it up your arm easily.  This will allow you to wash your wrist area.
  • Do not wear rings or any others types of jewelry.  A watch is mandatory for your other vital sign skills.


  1. Turn on the water so that it is lukewarm or tepid.  Make sure it is not too hot!
  2. Use dime-sized amount of soap.
  3. You must lather for at least 30 seconds. You can sing your A,B,C’s twice, or sing happy birthday twice to ensure the amount of time is correct.
  4. While washing, make sure your hands remain in the downward position, making sure not to touch any portion of the sink.  Wash in between the fingers, wrists, and scrub your palms with your fingernails.
  5. Rinse your hands.
  6. Dry your hands with paper towels.
  7. To turn off the water, grab a paper towel to touch the faucet handles.  DO NOT touch the handles with your hands after washing.  You will FAIL.
  8. Stay calm and you can pass this portion of the exam!

Best of luck and if you have any questions, please feel free to ask them below.