Are you interested in becoming a home care assistant? Home care assistants serve a crucial role in the society because they help the chronically ill, disabled, and elderly maintain a high quality of life. They understand the happiness that their patience feels because they are clean, eating nutritious foods, practicing proper hygiene, and enjoying everyday activities that many of us often take for granted.
There are two branches of home care assistants. These are:
1. Personal care aides-
These professionals bath, dress, groom, cook, change the bedding (blankets and comforters), and perform light housekeeping, for their patients. They also shop for groceries, provide valuable companionship, organize schedules, and help their clients enjoy recreational opportunities
2. Home health aides-
These professionals handle all of the responsibilities of personal care aides, but they also take vital signs, give medication, and change dressings.
Believe it or not, most people who work in this field either have a GED or high school diploma. In fact, most states don’t require you to have formal education to begin this career. However, some states do require formal classes as a prerequisite before you start working with clients. If you reside in such a state, you can attend class at vocational/technical schools, community colleges, or private health training academies. read more information on how to become a health assistant by visiting
The nature of this job changes from client to client, therefore many home care assistants receive the majority of their training at work under the supervision of a more experienced home care assistant, nurse, or certified home health aide. In this way, you will learn to perform specify tasks and acquire necessary skills to meet the needs of your patient. In addition, some employers offer training classes and may require you to pass a competency test before you start working.
Certification and/or Licensing
Believe it or not, you do not need to have a license to be a home care assistant. However, certification may be necessary for you to get a well-paying job. Along with an exam, the certification process comprises of about 75 hours of additional training. The National Association for Home Care and Hospice is the organization that most employers trust for the certification process.
Necessary Qualities and Skills
Based on information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, job-related injuries are common among home care assistants due to strenuous nature of the work. Therefore, taking care of a disabled person will require you to have physical strength and good health. From the employer’s standpoint, they are looking for someone who is dependable, patient, possess good organizational skills, and can communicate with a variety of people.
Although the word “home” in the title for this occupation, home care assistants can also find employment opportunities in:
- Retirement homes
- Residential group homes
- Nursing care facilities
- Community centers
Personal care aides may choose to receive additional health training to become home health aides. Home health aides have opportunities to advance to other careers in the health industry like nursing and medical assisting; both of which require additional training and education. In addition, skilled and experienced home care assistants may be provided with the opportunity to teach or supervise new home care students or assistants.
Based on information from the US Department of Labor in 2012, $19,910 was the median wage for personal care aids and $20, 820 for home health aides. However salaries ranged from as low as $16,330 and as high as $29,250. Therefore, it is important to note that salaries vary according to the particular employer as well as the geographical location that you work in. In addition, facilities generally pay more than home care agencies. As of May 2013, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the median salary of home health aides had increased to $21,020.
Employment opportunities for home care assistants are plentiful both now and in the future. In fact, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics expects a 48% increase in jobs for personal aids between 2012-2022.
The Bottom Line
If you are a naturally caring person and are looking for a job that pays well and in an industry that is expected to have massive job growth, then being a home care assistant is for you.