Find The Best Direct Care Aide Jobs For You

Where do you want to work?

0 selections
Average Salary
$33,454
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
36%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
81,493
Job Openings

Direct Care Aide Careers

What Does a Direct Care Aide Do

Personal care aides help clients with self-care and everyday tasks. They also provide social supports and assistance that enable clients to participate in their communities.

Duties

Personal care aides typically do the following:

  • Care for and assist clients with cognitive impairments, such as Alzheimer’s or mental illness
  • Engage clients by talking to or playing games with them, or by taking them for walks
  • Help clients with hygiene-related tasks, such as bathing, brushing teeth, and going to the bathroom
  • Transfer clients to and from a bed or a wheelchair
  • Complete housekeeping tasks, such as changing bed linens, washing dishes, and cleaning living areas
  • Help prepare and plan meals
  • Assist with organizing a client’s schedule and schedule appointments
  • Arrange transportation to and from doctors’ offices or the store
  • Help clients pay bills or manage money
  • Shop for personal items and groceries
  • Assist clients in going to work and participating in their communities

Personal care aides—also called caregivers and personal attendants—help clients with self-care and daily activities. Personal care aides perform tasks that are similar to those of home health aides. However, personal care aides cannot provide any medical services, whereas home health aides may provide basic medical services.

Direct support professionals work with people who have developmental or intellectual disabilities. They may help create a behavior plan and teach self-care skills, such as doing laundry or cooking meals. They may also provide other personal assistance services.

How To Become a Direct Care Aide

Most personal care aides are trained on the job. There are no formal education requirements for personal care aides, but most aides have a high school diploma.

Education

Although there are no formal education requirements for personal care aides, employers may prefer candidates with a high school diploma.

Training

Aides may be trained on the job by registered nurses, other personal care aides, or their direct employer. They are trained in specific tasks, such as how to work with a client who has a cognitive impairment and how to assist a client in preparing meals.

Most employers require aides to have training or certification in first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

Important Qualities

Detail oriented. Personal care aides must follow specific rules and protocols to help take care of clients. They must pay close attention to a client’s medical condition, quickly noting any changes that may require assistance from medical personnel.

Integrity. Personal care aides should make clients feel comfortable when the aides tend to personal activities, such as helping a client bathe. In addition, personal care aides must be dependable and trustworthy so that clients and their families can rely on them.

Interpersonal skills. Sometimes clients are in extreme pain or distress, and aides must be sensitive to their emotions. Aides must be compassionate, and they must enjoy helping people.

Physical stamina. Personal care aides should be comfortable performing physical tasks. They often need to lift or turn clients who have a disability.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Personal care aides may be required to complete a formal training program depending on the state where they work, and state laws vary widely in terms of the requirements that must be met. Some states and organizations may conduct background checks on prospective aides. A competency evaluation also may be required to ensure that the aide can perform certain tasks.

There are no federal training requirements for personal care aides. For specific state requirements, contact the state’s health board.

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the right jobs to get there.

Average Salary
$33,454
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
36%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
81,493
Job Openings

Direct Care Aide Career Paths

Top Careers Before Direct Care Aide

Cashier
20.1 %

Top Careers After Direct Care Aide

Cashier
9.5 %

Direct Care Aide Jobs You Might Like

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the rights job to get there.

Average Salary for a Direct Care Aide

Direct Care Aides in America make an average salary of $33,454 per year or $16 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $40,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $27,000 per year.
Average Salary
$33,454
Find Your Salary Estimate
How much should you be earning as an Architect? Use Zippia's Salary Calculator to get an estimation of how much you should be earning.

Best Paying Cities

City
ascdesc
Average Salarydesc
Gainesville, FL
Salary Range27k - 44k$35k$34,896
Elmira, NY
Salary Range25k - 35k$30k$29,878
Cape Girardeau, MO
Salary Range21k - 29k$26k$25,541
$21k
$44k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyascdescCompanyascdescStart DateascdescSalaryascdesc
Direct Care-New No HS Diploma Needed
Direct Care-New No HS Diploma Needed
Heinzerling Community
Heinzerling Community
06/23/2021
06/23/2021
$28,17506/23/2021
$28,175
Direct Support-Residential Care
Direct Support-Residential Care
XXX
XXX
06/23/2021
06/23/2021
$29,07206/23/2021
$29,072
Caregiver Direct Care Aide
Caregiver Direct Care Aide
Home Instead
Home Instead
05/30/2021
05/30/2021
$25,04405/30/2021
$25,044
Waiver Care Aide
Waiver Care Aide
Prestige Healthcare
Prestige Healthcare
05/23/2021
05/23/2021
$27,13105/23/2021
$27,131
Direct Care Aide
Direct Care Aide
Able2-Enhancing Potential
Able2-Enhancing Potential
05/22/2021
05/22/2021
$27,13105/22/2021
$27,131
See More Recent Salaries

Calculate your salary

Use Zippia's Salary Calculator to see how your pay matches up.

Direct Care Aide Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Direct Care Aide. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Direct Care Aide Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Direct Care Aide resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Detailed Information

Direct Care Aide Demographics

Gender

female

75.6 %

male

19.3 %

unknown

5.1 %

Ethnicity

White

66.8 %

Black or African American

13.0 %

Hispanic or Latino

10.7 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

66.7 %

Italian

8.3 %

Swedish

4.2 %
See More Demographics

Direct Care Aide Education

Majors

Nursing
15.6 %
Business
11.8 %

Degrees

Certificate

31.3 %

High School Diploma

26.3 %

Associate

15.4 %
See More Education Info

Online Courses For Direct Care Aide That You May Like

Essentials of Palliative Care
coursera

This course starts you on your journey of integrating primary palliative care into your daily lives. You will learn what palliative care is, how to communicate with patients, show empathy, and practice difficult conversations. You will learn how to screen for distress and provide psychosocial support. You will learn about goals of care and advance care planning and how to improve your success with having these conversations with patients. Finally, you will explore important cultural consideratio...

Palliative Care Always
coursera

Palliative Care Always is a specialization for health care practitioners, patients and caregivers. We've designed this specialization to demonstrate how palliative medicine integrates with patient care, and to help you develop primary palliative care skills. Over the next five courses, you will develop skills in symptom management, goals of care and effective communication to improve the quality of life for patients and families suffering with serious illness. Our hope is that you feel increasin...

Certificate in End of Life Care
ed2go

(19 contact hours) The Certificate in End-of-Life Care will enhance the knowledge and skills of health care professionals and individuals who work with or care for those experiencing a terminal illness...

See more
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Direct Care Aide

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 13.3% of direct care aides listed independent living on their resume, but soft skills such as detail oriented and integrity are important as well.

Best States For a Direct Care Aide

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a direct care aide. The best states for people in this position are Alaska, Washington, New Jersey, and Vermont. Direct care aides make the most in Alaska with an average salary of $50,960. Whereas in Washington and New Jersey, they would average $42,409 and $40,805, respectively. While direct care aides would only make an average of $39,774 in Vermont, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Alaska

Total Direct Care Aide Jobs:
180
Highest 10% Earn:
$55,000
Location Quotient:
1.01
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. North Dakota

Total Direct Care Aide Jobs:
257
Highest 10% Earn:
$42,000
Location Quotient:
1.3
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. New Jersey

Total Direct Care Aide Jobs:
1,713
Highest 10% Earn:
$57,000
Location Quotient:
1.02
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
View Full List

How Do Direct Care Aide Rate Their Jobs?

Working as a Direct Care Aide? Share your experience anonymously.
Rate
Do you work as a Direct Care Aide?
Rate how you like work as Direct Care Aide. It's anonymous and will only take a minute.
Rate

Top Direct Care Aide Employers

1. United Cerebral Palsy
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$39,602
Direct Care Aides Hired: 
32+
2. John Wiley & Sons
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$31,226
Direct Care Aides Hired: 
20+
3. State of Florida
4.3
Avg. Salary: 
$47,945
Direct Care Aides Hired: 
18+
4. Pony Bird
3.5
Avg. Salary: 
$33,824
Direct Care Aides Hired: 
12+
5. Access Staffing
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$38,504
Direct Care Aides Hired: 
9+
6. Westview Services
3.8
Avg. Salary: 
$35,671
Direct Care Aides Hired: 
8+

Direct Care Aide Videos

Updated October 2, 2020