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Become A Home Care Attendant

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Working As A Home Care Attendant

  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • $23,444

    Average Salary

What Does A Home Care Attendant Do

Home health aides help people with disabilities, chronic illness, or cognitive impairment with activities of daily living. They often help older adults who need assistance. In some states, home health aides may be able to give a client medication or check the client’s vital signs under the direction of a nurse or other healthcare practitioner.

Duties

Home health aides typically do the following:

  • Assist clients in their daily personal tasks, such as bathing or dressing
  • Provide basic health-related services according to a client’s needs, such as checking vital signs or administering prescribed medication at scheduled times
  • Do light housekeeping, such as laundry, washing dishes, and vacuuming in a client’s home
  • Help to organize a client’s schedule and plan appointments
  • Arrange transportation to doctors’ offices or for other kinds of outings
  • Shop for groceries and prepare meals to meet a client’s dietary specifications
  • Help to keep clients engaged in their social networks and communities

Home health aides, unlike personal care aides, typically work for certified home health or hospice agencies that receive government funding and therefore must comply with regulations. They work under the direct supervision of medical professionals, usually nurses. These aides keep records of services performed and of clients’ conditions and progress. They report changes in clients’ conditions to supervisors or case managers. Home health aides also work with therapists and other medical staff.

Depending on their clients’ needs, home health aides may provide some basic health-related services, such as checking a client’s pulse, temperature, and respiration rate. They may also help with simple prescribed exercises and or with giving medications. Occasionally, they change bandages or dressings, give massages, care for skin, or help with braces and artificial limbs. With special training, experienced home health aides also may help with medical equipment such as ventilators, which help clients breathe.

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How To Become A Home Care Attendant

There is no formal education requirement for home health aides, but most aides have at least a high school diploma. Home health aides who work for certified home health or hospice agencies must complete formal training and pass a standardized test.

Education

Although a high school diploma or equivalent is not generally required, most home health aides have one before entering the occupation. Some formal education programs may be available from community colleges or vocational schools.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Home health aides who work for agencies that receive reimbursement from Medicare or Medicaid must get a minimum level of training and pass a competency evaluation to be certified. Training typically includes learning about personal hygiene, reading and recording vital signs, infection control, and basic nutrition. Aides may take a competency exam to become certified without taking any training.

Additional requirements for certification vary by state. In some states, the only requirement for employment is on-the-job training, which employers generally provide. Other states require formal training, which is available from community colleges, vocational schools, elder care programs, and home healthcare agencies. In addition, states may conduct background checks on prospective aides. For specific state requirements, contact the state’s health board.

In addition, many home health aides may be required to obtain CPR certification.

Training

Home health aides may be trained in housekeeping tasks, such as cooking for clients who have special dietary needs. Aides learn basic safety techniques, including how to respond in an emergency. Specific training may be needed for certification if state certification is required.

In addition, clients have their own preferences, and aides may need time to become comfortable working with them.

Important Qualities

Detail oriented. Home health aides must adhere to specific rules and protocols to help take care of clients. Aides must carefully follow instructions from healthcare professionals, such as how to care for a client’s wound or how to identify changes in a client’s condition.

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

Interpersonal skills. Home health aides must work closely with their clients. 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. Home health aides should be comfortable performing physical tasks. They might need to lift or turn clients.

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Home Care Attendant Jobs

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Home Care Attendant Career Paths

Home Care Attendant
Licensed Practical Nurse Staff Nurse
Assistant Director Of Nursing
7 Yearsyrs
Direct Care Staffer Home Health Aid Front Desk Agent
Assistant General Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Attendant Security Officer Account Manager
Business Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Staff Nurse Assistant Director Office Manager
Business Office Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Staff Nurse Instructor General Manager
Center Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Crew Member General Manager Chief Operating Officer
Chief Executive Officer
9 Yearsyrs
Office Manager Registered Nurse Staff Nurse
Clinical Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Attendant Home Health Aid Staff Nurse
Clinical Services Director
11 Yearsyrs
Direct Support Professional Case Manager Social Worker
Director Of Social Services
6 Yearsyrs
Direct Care Staffer Security Officer Maintenance Technician
Facilities Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Office Manager Operations Manager
General Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Specialist Driver Direct Support Professional
Home Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Preschool Teacher Education Paraprofessional Activity Coordinator
Life Enrichment Director
7 Yearsyrs
Registered Nurse Staff Nurse
Nurse Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Registered Nurse Registered Nurse Case Manager
Nursing Director
9 Yearsyrs
Direct Support Professional Program Coordinator
Program Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Emergency Medical Technician Sales Consultant Leasing Consultant
Resident Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Specialist Delivery Driver Direct Support Professional
Residential Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Crew Member Technician Service Manager
Service Director
10 Yearsyrs
Licensed Practical Nurse Nurse Staff Nurse
Unit Manager
6 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Home Care Attendant?

Home Care Attendant Demographics

Gender

Female

81.1%

Male

16.3%

Unknown

2.6%
Ethnicity

White

62.2%

Hispanic or Latino

16.4%

Black or African American

10.8%

Asian

7.4%

Unknown

3.1%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

52.4%

French

6.3%

Chinese

4.8%

Vietnamese

4.8%

German

4.8%

Polish

4.8%

Italian

4.8%

Hindi

3.2%

Arabic

3.2%

Swedish

1.6%

Nepali

1.6%

Somali

1.6%

Carrier

1.6%

Hmong

1.6%

Cantonese

1.6%

Korean

1.6%
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Home Care Attendant Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

16.8%

Mohawk Valley Community College

9.2%

Liberty University

6.9%

Ashford University

5.8%

Des Moines Area Community College

5.2%

Wichita State University

5.2%

Community College of Allegheny County

5.2%

University of Texas at San Antonio

4.6%

Ultimate Medical Academy - Clearwater

4.0%

University of Massachusetts - Boston

4.0%

Baton Rouge Community College

4.0%

Grand Canyon University

4.0%

University of North Dakota

3.5%

University of Texas at Arlington

3.5%

South University

3.5%

Tyler Junior College

2.9%

Everest Institute

2.9%

Community College of Vermont

2.9%

Virginia Commonwealth University

2.9%

Delgado Community College

2.9%
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Majors

Nursing

20.9%

Business

10.5%

Medical Assisting Services

9.2%

Health Care Administration

7.3%

Psychology

6.4%

Nursing Assistants

5.7%

Social Work

5.0%

Criminal Justice

5.0%

General Studies

4.8%

Education

3.5%

Medical Technician

3.2%

Liberal Arts

2.6%

Accounting

2.5%

Communication

2.2%

Human Services

2.2%

Health/Medical Preparatory Programs

2.0%

Human Development

2.0%

Biology

1.7%

Sociology

1.7%

Cosmetology

1.6%
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Degrees

Other

36.3%

Bachelors

24.3%

Associate

17.2%

Certificate

8.8%

Masters

7.5%

Diploma

4.3%

License

1.0%

Doctorate

0.6%
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Real Home Care Attendant Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Home Care Attendant Sandi Arnold, LLC Hudson, IL Oct 24, 2007 $41,740
Personal Home Care Attendant Christine M. Simpson San Marcos, CA Dec 21, 2010 $21,287
Patient Care Attendant Home Sweet Home RCFE Sugar Land, TX Dec 17, 2007 $21,195 -
$23,608
Patient Care Attendant Home Sweet Home RCFE Sugar Land, TX Dec 05, 2007 $21,195 -
$23,608

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Top Skills for A Home Care Attendant

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  1. Meal Prep
  2. Personal Care
  3. Laundry Services
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Complete light household chores and assisted in meal preparation and in the aid and distribution of meals or snacks.
  • Consumer-directed attendants provide personal care services and related services to eligible recipients.
  • Supported clients by providing housekeeping and laundry services; shopping for food and other housing needs.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in taking patient vital signs.
  • Provide companionship, conversation, ambulatory stabilization; assistance with personal needs.

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Top Home Care Attendant Employers

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