Guzman touts win in establishing Spanish language option for Nurse Aide Assessment

Legislator was advancing bill to remove barrier for those in PA who do not speak English as their first language

READING, Jan. 4 – State Rep. Manny Guzman today announced that the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services has updated its policy to allow candidates for the Nurse Aide Assessment to take the written oral exam in English or Spanish.

The change, which went into effect Wednesday, comes as a result of continuing efforts led by Guzman who had previously introduced legislation that would remove the barrier for people who do not speak English as their first language.

“Time after time, I have witnessed how Hispanics are forced to climb unnecessary ladders to achieve their goals,” said Guzman, D-Berks. “Information or services that are critical to them are only provided in English. We need to understand that this is a preventable limitation for hundreds of families in Pennsylvania.”

Violet Emory, executive director of the Tec Centro Berks (BLWDC) praised Guzman’s determination and unwavering support in championing this cause on behalf of students at Tec Centro Berks, and students across the entire state.

“Guzman’s dedication to leveling the playing field for students with diverse linguistic backgrounds reflects a deep understanding of the importance of equal opportunities in education,” Emory said.

“This initiative will undoubtedly have a profound and lasting effect on the workforce in Berks County, opening doors for individuals who may have faced barriers in the past."

“On behalf of Tec Centro and the students whose lives will be positively impacted, we extend our heartfelt gratitude for your diligent efforts to provide this opportunity,” she said.

Guzman explained that with Pennsylvania experiencing a widespread health care professional shortage, it is essential to evaluate and fix any potential restrictions preventing qualified individuals from entering the profession.

“I am thrilled to share that the Spanish-language version of the test is now available for the Nurse Aide Assessment. I will continue doing everything in my power to make sure that regardless of the field, equity and inclusivity prevails in Pennsylvania,” Guzman said.

The National Nurse Aide Assessment Program is the largest nurse aide certification exam program in the United States and administers over 200,000 exams annually. Before this week’s policy change by DHS, the NNAAP had only been administered in English in Pennsylvania – even though the test is available in Spanish.