Do you enjoy caring for others? Did you know that you can get paid to do so?
Being a home health aide (HHA) is about providing care to allow others to maintain their dignity and independence.
How Does An HHA Improve The Lives Of Others?
Personal care (bathing, dressing, toileting)
Light housework (cooking, washing dishes, dusting)
Errands (grocery shopping, going to doctor’s appointments)
Companionship to allow their clients to remain at home rather than live in a facility.
This helps clients remain as independent as possible based on their condition.
A Day In The Life Of An HHA
There's no such thing as a typical day for an HHA! Your duties depend on your client’s needs and the tasks written by the nurse in the client’s care plan. You're part of a team that includes:
The client and their family
A social worker
The client's doctors
Other specialists such as physical therapists
1. Observing and reporting changes in the client's condition. (Medication reactions, appetite, or illness).
2. Helping clients with tasks. Personal care (bathing, dressing, toileting); housekeeping (making the bed, vacuuming, watering plants); or errands (grocery shopping or scheduling appointments).
3. Helping clients remain engaged in life. Encouraging clients to socialize, attend events, or participate in hobbies.
Depending on your state's rules, you may give medication reminders, help clients recovering from injuries with their exercises or take temperatures.
Which of these would you do as an HHA?
What Kind Of Experience Do I Need?
Most HHAs have a high school diploma or GED. HHA training covers:
Body mechanics (how the body moves, how to properly move clients)
Basic nutrition and how to cook for people with special diets
Infection control (handwashing, cleaning techniques)
Some states require certification, including a test, background check or specialized training on:
Basic first aid
Your state’s board of health lists the requirements for becoming an HHA. You can find your state's board of health website from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) website, which has links to each state’s board of health.
For local training programs, Google “home health aide training” and the name of your state.
Where Can I Find Work As An HHA?
Private (working directly for the client)
Home care agencies
There are similar jobs known as certified nursing assistants (CNAs) or personal care assistants (PCAs) who might also work in facilities such as nursing homes, hospices, assisted living, or continuing care retirement communities.
How Much Can I Make?
🇺🇸 United States
$27,080 per year or $13.02 per hour .
$20.88 Canadian per hour in Canada .
You’ll Love Being A HHA If:
You like helping people. You're sensitive to others' needs and help clients have a more fulfilling life.
You're detail oriented. There are many rules to follow when helping clients. You also have to carefully follow instructions and report your observations.
You have great people skills. You need to be able to communicate well with your client, their family, the care team, and others involved in your client’s life. Being dependable and trustworthy also helps.
You have physical stamina (long lasting strength). You may be on your feet often or have tasks such as lifting or turning clients.
Think About Another Career Path If:
You have a hard time providing personal care. You should be comfortable bathing and dressing others and dealing with bodily functions such as urine.
Patience isn’t your strong suit. Clients are often in pain, unaware of their actions or struggling in other ways. They may take their feelings out on their HHA.
Time management is hard for you. Your duties include finishing tasks, getting clients to appointments, and arriving to work on time.
You don’t like following instructions. You need to be able to follow the instructions given for client care to ensure your client’s safety and your own.
Pick The Future HHA
Has difficulty following instructions exactly.
Has great stamina.
Doesn't like dealing with bodily functions.
Is shy when meeting new people.
Is very patient and a great communicator.
Really likes details and easily deals with changes to routine.
Who sounds like the best fit as an HHA?
If a career as an HHA sounds like the right one for you:
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