The first question you should ask about any potential career is how much money you'll make. This article answers the questions you’ll have about the earnings of State Tested Nurse Aides (STNA) in Ohio. In most states, STNAs are called Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA). For a more detailed guide on CNA's wages, view our guide on “How much do CNAs make”.
A note about our data. We use the median of the data gathered from The BLS at data.bls.gov and other salary data sources such as Salary.com, Indeed.com and Zippia.com. We believe that this is the best average to follow, rather than the mean or mode. The mean will find the average of all salaries in each state; the mode will favor the most frequently reported salaries. However, the median will find the middle. All data in this report will favor the middle salary from all ranges, which means 50% will fall below and 50% will be above the salary data reported below. On another note, we have removed data from Puerto Rico, Guam, and The Virgin Islands from the data we have sourced as we have focused on the 50 US States plus The District Of Colombia.
STNA Salaries in The United States
The first thing you’ll want to know is how much money you’ll make in a career as an STNA. This matters since you’ll be investing your time and money.
How Much Does an STNA Make a Year?
The average annual pay for an STNA in Ohio is $31,180 as of 2021. This stat is the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) as of 2022. But, many factors affect how much you’ll earn—such as the city you live in or your employer.
If you live in Cincinnati and you’re just starting your career, you’ll probably earn between $28,500 and $35,500 per year. But, if you live in Portsmouth, Ohio with the same work experience, you’ll probably make between $26,800 and $33,200 per year. Though these cities are only 100 miles apart, there’s a $2,000 difference in salaries for the same job.
It appears you’ll make more money in Cincinnati. But, you still have to factor in the cost of living. It turns out that the lower cost of living in Portsmouth isn’t enough to offset the drop in salary.
Check out this table of median salaries, both hourly and annually, in all major cities in Ohio.
This data has been sourced and organized from Salary.com, and the data was updated in April 2022.
Hourly median wage
Annual median wage
Compared To State Average
Cuyahoga Falls, OH
How Much Does an STNA Make an Hour?
In Ohio, the average hourly pay for an STNA in 2021 was $15.06 per hour, according to the BLS.
The 2022 data isn’t available when writing on BLS; however, we have sourced data from multiple sources, including salary.com and indeed.com.
STNA Salary by State
An STNA in Ohio is equivalent to a Certified Nursing Assistant in all other states.
The average pay for CNAs ranges from $25,690 in Mississippi to $43,080 in Alaska. In the Midwest, Minnesota has the highest average annual pay at $36,730.
New York is the only nearby state paying an average greater than $40,000. Most of the higher-paying STNA/CNA jobs in New York are in the New York City area. In New York City, most STNA/CNAs earn between $35,300 and $43,700.
Unfortunately, it isn’t worth moving to New York City for the higher pay. To maintain the same standard of living, you would have a salary of $31,000 in Cincinnati; you would have to make $84,000 in Manhattan.
Factors That Affect How Much an STNA Makes
As with any other career, the more experience you have, the more you’ll probably earn. A less obvious factor is the facility where you work. Normally hospitals pay more than nursing homes, while home healthcare pays the least.
If you want to make the most money, you’ll take a job in a hospital, right? Surprisingly, the BLS’s nationwide data for STNA/CNAs shows the highest paying institutions are community colleges owned by local governments. These jobs provide an average annual salary of $68,750 ($33.05 per hour).
This event isn’t an anomaly. Many STNA/CNA positions in other sectors pay substantially more than comparable jobs in traditional healthcare institutions. For example, an STNA/CNA working at the United States Postal Service will earn $41,850 ($20.12 per hour) on average.
How Quickly Can You Become an STNA and Start Earning?
Under Ohio law, you’re required to complete seventy-five hours of coursework and clinical training. Depending on how much time you have per day for coursework, you can complete the required courses in two to eight weeks.
After completing your training with an 80% or better average, you can sit for the state-administered test. After you pass the test, you can earn money.
If you’re already a nursing student or have worked as a bedside aide in a hospital for one year out of the last five years, you can skip the training and go straight to the test. This exception makes working as an STNA an excellent choice for a nursing student who wants to earn money while in school.
How Much an STNA Makes Compared to Other Nursing Jobs
STNAs make more than Home Health Aides (HHAs) but less than any other nursing job. The average pay for an STNA is $31,330, whereas the average for an HHA is $26,410.
In Ohio, a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) makes $48,030 on average, and a Registered Nurse (RN) makes $71,640.
At the top of the list of non-specialty nurses is the Nurse Practitioner (NP). These folks make, on average, $112,490 per year in Ohio. That’s approximately $60,000 less than a primary care physician in Ohio. The high pay is because an NP performs most of the doctor's duties, e.g., prescribing medication.
If you want to make big money in nursing, you need to specialize. In Ohio, a Labor/Delivery Nurse makes $145,375 on average. ICU nurses make approximately 147,000 on average. A Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) makes $187,410 on average.
Most nurses earned better-than-average incomes. STNAs are on the lower end of the scale. Whether being an STNA is a good fit for you may depend on what stage you’re at in your nursing career.
Nursing school is expensive. Being an STNA gives you a way to earn money while working your way through the nursing hierarchy. That means you won’t have to take out as much in loans to get by while in school.
STNA Salary FAQs
How much you earn is just the tip of the iceberg. You probably have many questions about STNA salaries—such as questions about overtime pay or if you can earn a living as an STNA. This section answers these questions and more.
What Is the Difference Between an STNA and a CNA?
The only difference between a State Tested Nurse Aide (STNA) and a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) is that the State of Ohio refers to CNAs as STNAs. Some other states call their CNAs by other names. For example, New Hampshire calls CNAs Licensed Nursing Assistants (LNA).
Am I Being Paid Fairly as an STNA?
Fairness is a highly subjective term. Still, we can use some common guidelines to determine if you are paid a fair wage. One measure of fairness will be if your wage is significantly lower than other STNAs working in a similar facility with the same level of experience.
A good place to look to see if the wage you’re earning is fair compared to what others are earning is the BLS website. For example, if you want to know what the minimum pay is for STNAs in the top 90% (10th percentile) of the pay scale in the Cleveland area, you can go to this page on the BLS website. The 10th percentile is a good place to look for expected wages when you have no STNA experience.
Next, choose “one occupation for multiple geographic areas.” Then, click inside the “select one occupation” box and type ctrl+f (or command+f on older Macs). In the ctrl+f box, type “nursing assist.” Now, click the “metropolitan” radio button.
Now the “select one or more areas” box will appear. Since we’re only interested in Cleveland in this example, choose the Cleveland-Elyria option. When the “select one or more data types” box appears, choose the “hourly 10th percentile wages” for this example and click the next button and the submit button.
Now, we see that the minimum hourly wage for the top 90% (10th percentile) of STNAs in the Cleveland area is $14.01. If you’re just starting as an STNA in Cleveland and you’re making significantly less than $14.01 per hour, you aren’t being fairly paid. An exception might be if you’re working in a private home.
Are STNAs Paid Mostly Hourly or Annually?
Workers can only receive annual salaries if they’re considered exempt employees by the United States Department of Labor. Otherwise, you’ll be paid by the hour. The advantage of earning an annual salary is that you’re paid the same even if you work less than forty hours per week.
The Labor Department’s Fact Sheet 17A lists the requirements to be an exempt employee. STNAs rarely meet these requirements. That means you’ll probably earn an hourly wage—and that’s a good thing, as you’ll see below.
Do STNAs Get Paid Overtime?
Employers must pay non-exempt employees at least 1.5 times their regular hourly wage for any hours over forty hours per week. Exempt employees are not required to receive overtime pay.
Since it’s rare for an STNA to be an exempt employee, your employer must pay at least time and a half for overtime hours. For example, if your regular pay is $15.00 per hour, they must pay you at least $22.50 for any hours over forty hours per week.
Do STNAs Get Paid More Privately or in Hospitals?
As a general rule, an STNA will earn more working in a hospital as opposed to a private home. You can get an idea of how much an STNA working in a private home makes in Ohio by looking at the BLS website for Home Health and Personal Care Aides.
At a median hourly wage of $11.54, you’ll probably make substantially less than you would earn working for a hospital. Just remember, there are always exceptions to general rules.
What State Pays STNAs the Most per Hour?
Alaska is the state where you can earn the most as an STNA/CNA. The average hourly wage in Alaska for STNA/CNAs is $20.71. Unfortunately, Alaska has a much higher cost of living—25% higher than the average cost of living across the United States.
New York pays STNA/CNAs the highest in the lower forty-eight states at $19.56 per hour. But, the cost of living is 20% higher than the national average. You can also expect this pay rate to be skewed toward being much higher in the New York City area as opposed to upstate New York.
The cost of living in New York City is much higher than in other states —even higher than in California or Alaska.
Ohio’s cost of living is about 8% lower than the average cost of living across the United States. If you’re considering moving to another state to make more money, it’s essential to do your due diligence on the cost of living in the other state.
Can You Live off an STNA’s Salary in the USA?
In most places, the answer is yes! In Ohio, the average annual salary is $31,330 for STNAs. The average annual salary for all occupations in Ohio is $53,170.
So, you’ll be making less than the average wages among all fields in Ohio, but it doesn’t require much training to work as an STNA.
The average of all professions includes people like surgeons, that have average earnings of $346,060 in Ohio. So, the data is somewhat skewed.
STNA Wages in a Nutshell
You won’t get rich working as an STNA, but you can earn a decent wage. Being an STNA is an excellent choice if you’re just starting your nursing career since you can work as an STNA while training for higher-paying nursing jobs like RNs and LPNs.
If you want the highest pay for an STNA, consider going outside the traditional employers. The post office needs STNAs on staff and they’ll pay much more than hospitals. If you’re considering moving to another state to make more money, it’s good to research the cost of living in various states versus the potential salary.