When helping others falls to your shoulders, you might be prepared for a career as a caregiver. Caregivers are also known as home health or personal care assistants. They provide support to those who are ill, wounded, mentally or physically disabled, or the elderly and vulnerable.
Caregivers live at home and support their clients with day-to-day tasks, such as bathing and bathroom duties, cooking, shaving, taking medicine, and some homework.
Caregivers help clients make and manage doctor’s appointments, provide or arrange transportation, and support their clients as a friend. Read on to learn what the requirements are to become a caregiver and how to apply online!
What Caregivers Do
When a senior ages and they decide they need help with tasks, loved ones may want to add a caregiver to the team. This may be a neighbor or family friend who provides voluntary treatment, or a paid specialist.
Some families also hire certified nursing assistants (CNA) or a medicare-certified home care nurse approved by a doctor. Most caregivers have a high school diploma, at least when they start their careers, but that is not required. Nurses or other caregivers do a lot of preparation for the job.
The training includes safety knowledge, emergency response, cooking of special dietary foods. Many states may require more advanced training from a vocational school, elder care services, or other organization for home health.
Certification is required for caregivers who work for Medicare or Medicaid receiving agencies.
Becoming a Skilled Caregiver
To become a certified nursing assistant (CNA), you need training, although the particular training in each state is different. All states also control CNAs employed in nursing homes, and all states maintain a register.
While there is a federal minimum, each state also sets requirements for teaching and evaluating competencies. Generally, they make much more than non-medical caregivers, although rates differ with distance.
Some states set the threshold for training at 75 hours (the federal minimum), and some set it at 120 hours. CNAs are usually tested for their ability to take measures of blood pressure, put on compression stockings, or give partial bed baths.
Career Outlook for a Caregiver
Caregiver jobs will expand exponentially with the aging of baby boomers. Caregiver jobs will rise by 69 percent by 2020, far faster than the average worker, according to the BLS.
In 2010, caregivers earned a median salary of $9.70 an hour to $20.170 an hour, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
How to Apply Online
Caregivers have the ability to handle and care with regard to clients and their properties. They have the energy to adapt to various living conditions and locations.
You may apply to become a senior caregiver in the home through websites, like Home Instead, Visiting Angels, and Superior Senior Care. You can also look for available jobs through Indeed, Zip Recruiter, or Better Team.
There are many non-profit organizations and hospices dependent on volunteer staff, and also provide unique training to those who wish to work with them. But, if you know of an elderly neighbor or relative who may need assistance, you can find yourself offering services in a less formal manner.
Volunteer caregivers are frequently asked to spend a couple of hours per day with a senior because this low-pressure situation will help ease him or her into the concept of getting a caregiver without feeling demeaned or in danger.
Non-medical caregiver responsibilities include providing personal support, care and companionship to seniors as well as families in need of assistance.
Other duties may include cooking, dressing, bathing, medicine reminders, walking or transportation assistance, errands which social assistance. A partner caregiver focuses on the elderly person’s needs and has no medical history.
With several elderly loved ones, support is only brought in until they begin to have difficulty with the more personal aspects of everyday life.
Getting help with dressing, using the toilet, cleaning up after an illness, or brushing and combing their hair may be a critical step foraging on the spot. Since this is a sensitive topic, caregivers should be kind and compassionate.