Home health aides are in-home caregivers who assist clients that are sick, elderly, or differently abled. Home health aides provide necessary care and assistance, and they can greatly improve the lives of the people who they assist. They can also help to reduce the costs associated with seeking care by allowing their clients to remain in their homes. This can eliminate or reduce the need for hospices and elder care facilities. If you've decided that you'd like to make a positive contribution to somebody's life by becoming a home health aide, these following steps can guide you:
1. Volunteer your time.
- Before committing to becoming a home health aide, it's a good idea to volunteer your time in related settings. For example, if you have elderly or differently abled relatives, perhaps you could offer to help them for a few hours each week. If this is not an option, you may be able to volunteer in a nursing home.
- Volunteer Guide suggests calling your local nursing home and asking to speak with their volunteer coordinator, who may be able to arrange a volunteer schedule for you. Volunteering can help you gain the skills you will need as a home health aide. It will also give you an idea of the physical and emotional requirements necessary to do this job.
2. Take a course in home health care.
- While taking a course in home health care is optional, the knowledge you will gain from such a class will be extremely valuable to you in your new line of work. Topics commonly covered in such training programs include CPR, first aid, life support, and some basic medical ideas and terminology, according to Education Portal.
- Your local community college may offer a class in home health care. Programs are usually less than a year long, from start to completion.
3. Find clients.
- If you decide not to receive certification as a home health aide, you may still work with private clients as an independent contractor. You may be able to find clients through word of mouth, internet job boards, and classified ads.
- If you have completed a home health care course and have become certified, many more options are available to you. You may want to seek employment with an agency that provides in-home care for people, rather than finding your own clients.
In-home health care improves the lives of many people. Being a home health aide is a job that carries rich social rewards; you get to work directly with people in need of assistance, helping them to live healthy and independent lives. These three steps will get you started on the right path to becoming a home health aide.