What Is a Home Care Aide? Career Guide To Home Care Assistants/Aides

Home health and personal care aides monitor the condition of people with disabilities or chronic illnesses and help them with daily living activities.

Home health and personal care aides work in a variety of settings, including clients’ homes, group homes, and day services programs. Most aides work full time, although part-time work is common. Work schedules may vary.

Home health and personal care aides typically need a high school diploma or equivalent, but some positions do not require it. Those working in certified home health or hospice agencies may need to complete formal training or pass a standardized test.

The median annual wage for home health and personal care aides was $29,430 in May 2021.

Employment of home health and personal care aides is projected to grow 33 percent from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations.

About 599,800 openings for home health and personal care aides are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

Explore resources for employment and wages by state and area for home health and personal care aides.

Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of home health and personal care aides with similar occupations.

Learn more about home health and personal care aides by visiting additional resources, including O*NET, a source on key characteristics of workers and occupations.

A day in the life of a Home Health Aide

The average salary for home care aides

The individual requirements of a home care aide depend on where they work and the needs of the patient. Additionally, the training of a home care aide can affect their expected responsibilities. Home health aides with a more in-depth medical background may be able to assist with more medical-related tasks, whereas other home health aides might focus more on household tasks and assistance with mobility. Home care aides often have the following responsibilities:

Home care aides need to be flexible, as the requirements of the position vary depending on the patient. A home care aide may assist a senior patient one day with their mobility around the hospital and then offer cleaning and cooking services to a post-surgical patient the next day.

What is a home care aide?

Home care aides are professionals who assist patients who are injured or ill with tasks like mobility, grooming, medication and home services. A home care aide often visits the patient either in the hospital or in their home and will cater their services to the individual patient. Some home care aides work full-time for a hospital or in-home care service provider, whereas others may work on a part-time or contractual basis, building their caseload on their own.

Home care aides are often supervised by a licensed medical provider who assists them with basic medical tasks. Some aides solely offer assistance in the home of the patient, whereas others may travel with the patient to complete errands or to meet work responsibilities. Home care aides may work with patients of all types, including post-surgical patients, seniors and patients with developmental disabilities.

The typical work environment for home care aides

Home care aides typically work with patients in their homes. Their patients may live in a single-family house, apartment or condo. Some patients live in an assisted living facility. The typical workday of the home care aide varies from patient to patient. A patient who is recovering from surgery may need assistance with mobility and rehabilitative activities, whereas senior patients may need assistance with things like managing medications and transportation to and from medical appointments. The daily work expectations and responsibilities of home care aides depend on the individual needs of the patient.

How to become a home care aide

Home care aides are trained in basic medical care. While they do not typically perform medical services, they may assist with things like managing medications and redressing wounds. Some training is required to work as a home care aide. You can become a home care aide with the following steps:

The job outlook for home care aides

As aging populations will continue to require home care following medical procedures or chronic health conditions, the job outlook for home care aides is positive. The demand for home care aides is expected to increase by 37% from 2018 -2028, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. With modern medical care, individuals are living longer than before, with many choosing to live out their retirement and senior years in the comfort of their own houses.

How home care aides can advance in their careers

Home care aides can advance their career with the following tips:

By taking additional training and volunteering your services to gain additional experience, you can demonstrate your dedication and commitment to the industry as well as develop the skills necessary to further your home care aide career.

FAQ

How do I become a home health aide in California?

Home Care Aide Application Process
  1. Access the Guardian Applicant Portal at https://guardian.dss.ca.gov/Applicant. …
  2. Create an Account by clicking “Register as a new user.” A temporary password will be sent to your email account. …
  3. Enter Application Information. …
  4. Retrieve the Live Scan Form.

What is the highest pay for a home health aide?

Home Health Aides made a median salary of $27,080 in 2020. The best-paid 25 percent made $31,280 that year, while the lowest-paid 25 percent made $23,560.

What is HHA?

Medical Definition of home health aide

: a trained and certified health-care worker who provides assistance to a patient in the home with personal care (as hygiene and exercise) and light household duties (as meal preparation) and who monitors the patient’s condition —abbreviation HHA.

What is home care aide registration?

California Home Care Aide Registry. Welcome to the Department of Social Services Home Care Aide Registry. This website provides individuals with the ability to check the status of a Home Care Aide (HCA) who is listed on the Home Care Aide Registry.

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