What Is Home Health Aide?
Working in-home care is different from working in other healthcare settings because you work with patients while they are comfortable in their own homes. Someone who needs your assistance has invited you into their personal space. And even if some of your clients could be tough and the work can be difficult at times, you should remember that the finest reward of all is that you are continuously improving someone else’s life.
Definition of Home Health Aide
Home health aides are members of the healthcare team who support care delivery while directly supervised and delegated by a certified and credentialed healthcare professional.
Elderly, recuperating, or disabled people who prefer to live at home to receive care might receive support from home health aides. Most home health aides assist people who require more intensive care than their friends and family can offer. Additionally, they assist freshly released hospital patients with their somewhat urgent needs.
Home health aides are often hired and assigned to patients by home health agencies, nursing homes, residential care facilities, and social assistance organizations. A registered nurse, physical therapist, or social worker will oversee an aide’s duties. The supervisor will give information on when to visit patients and what services to provide.
What does an HHA do?
A home health aide’s (HHA) primary responsibility is to support a person’s ability to live independently at home by helping with everyday tasks. The effort is worthwhile and significant. In addition, home health care is more affordable because it is personalized to the needs of the individual, in addition to assisting someone to remain in the setting where they feel most comfortable.
A home health aide has no “average week” because the work is so different. The length of an HHA shift is flexible; you can work for as little as two hours if you’d like, but there are also more typical eight-hour shifts and even live-in scenarios available depending on the client’s needs. The duration a customer requires an HHA might range from a few weeks to several years or longer.
In addition, although most of their clients are aging seniors, home health aides can work with a wide range of age groups. Finally, home health aides have a significant impact when they are at home. Every day, as an HHA, you make a considerable difference in people’s lives by providing much-needed respite to family caregivers, supporting a client through a challenging recovery, or building great relationships.
When to look for a home health aide
It may be time to think about hiring a hired caregiver when your loved one can no longer take care of themselves or when family caregivers are no longer able to help. These are warning signs to watch out for:
- Leaving the stove on
- Wandering away from home
- Not eating regularly or nutritiously
- Not bathing regularly
- Falling frequently or having difficulty walking without help
- Not driving safely to doctors’ offices or other appointments
- Not preparing simple meals
Those who claim they don’t need or want help may push back against you. Of course, every case is different, and everyone has different needs, but if you believe your loved one can’t be safe without assistance, talk about your alternatives and let the person getting care to decide what they feel most comfortable doing.
Home health aide duties
Help with daily tasks is provided by home health aides (ADLs). Let’s explore these responsibilities of a home health aide in more detail:
Personal Care Assistance
Even though many require help with daily duties, 87 percent of seniors prefer to live in their own homes as long as feasible. So you get to assist elders in staying in their most comfortable and happy homes as a home health aide.
You may be the help a family needs in some instances to keep an elderly parent or parents safe and independent at home. Your presence as a home health aide can make a world of difference for someone who has difficulty with basic personal care activities like washing and dressing.
Bathing, Grooming, Using the Toilet, and Dressing
You will pick up a lot of abilities that will enable you to give your client any personal care during your training as a home health aide. For example, you might be taking care of a person who has difficulty walking, so you might need to transfer them to a wheelchair or assist them in walking with a cane or walker when it comes to bathing, dressing, and using the toilet.
Or, if they can no longer walk, you might need to employ a mechanical lift (a machine or tool that helps move them). Loved ones require your assistance because it can be physically taxing to assist someone with standing up, walking, bathing, and dressing. Home health aides learn how to provide a sponge bath and take care of hair while a client is in bed because a client can occasionally be unable to get out of bed.
An HHA must offer range-of-motion exercises to someone who isn’t moving much (if prescribed by a doctor). The ability to move and position a patient using a draw sheet, a thin sheet placed underneath them, is particularly beneficial in preventing bed sores and skin deterioration.
Because grooming calls for quick, steady motions that your client might not be able to do, it can become very challenging. You can anticipate assisting your customers with various tasks, including shaving, brushing or styling their hair, putting on cosmetics, cleaning and filing their nails, dressing, caring for their mouths and dentures, and more.
Meal Planning and Preparation
Perhaps your client has dementia, and cooking could be dangerous. They have arthritis and can no longer chop food or are paralyzed from the waist down. Numerous factors could prevent a customer from being able to cook or prepare food for themselves. Clients can benefit from a safe environment and varied, healthy meals with the assistance of a home health aide in the kitchen.
Medication Reminders and Picking up Prescriptions
A caregiver in the patient’s home, who can observe the patient in their regular setting, is the finest coworker a doctor could hope for. Because it’s simple for patients to become overwhelmed by the sheer amount of medications they need to take, it’s crucial to ensure that someone is adhering to their prescription regimen and not skipping a dosage. In addition, helping clients pick up their prescriptions relieves family members of yet another duty for those who can no longer drive.
Maintaining a clean and habitable home can be difficult for someone unable to take care of oneself securely. You understand how challenging it is to carry out everyday housekeeping duties if you have ever been injured or ill at home. You give customers the certainty that those tasks will be completed even if they cannot do so as a home health aide.
The stress the client’s family members are experiencing can be significantly reduced thanks to your talents. In addition, the family can unwind and concentrate on spending time with their loved ones when you take over many daily duties.
According to research, social connections are essential for your physical and mental wellbeing. This is particularly true for elderly individuals who could feel lonely without their family and friends. According to studies, a person’s risk of dying young is dramatically enhanced by social isolation. In addition, isolation is linked to a 50 percent greater risk of dementia, a 32 percent increased risk of stroke, and a 29 percent increased risk of heart disease.
In addition to assisting your client, you enhance your health by providing care with compassion, expertise, and dependability. Your blood pressure, stress level, and sense of meaning and purpose in life can all be decreased by helping others. Being compensated to improve people’s days is an added benefit of working as a home health aide!
What is the workplace of a Home Health Aide like?
Work environments for home health aides might vary. To allow patients to remain at home and keep their dignity while getting care, they are typically engaged by staffing companies, hospices, and home health services. While some home health aides may perform private duties in hospitals or nursing facilities, most situations involve visiting the patient’s house. Other facilities include those for mental health and substance misuse, nursing homes, senior community care centers, or employment places for individuals and families.
Rewards of working as a home health aide
You get the chance to establish a deep and meaningful connection with each client you see by working one-on-one with them in their home. Along with your home health aide’s duties, such as personal care and housework, you can listen to your client’s childhood recollections, laugh at a joke, or play the music that makes them think of good times.
You can enjoy a flexible schedule and a job in one of the fastest-growing industries in the US by working in-home care, which also gives you a meaningful and worthwhile vocation. There will be plenty of opportunities for continued employment as the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 41 percent increase in the number of positions available for home health aides by 2026. You have the opportunity to perform meaningful and vital work that improves the world by pursuing a career as a home health aide. That job description is effective!
Hiring and Paying for an Aide
A home health aide might be hired directly from you or through an organization. However, the procedure is easier if you work with an agency. You pay the agency, and it manages all aspects of employment and human resources, including background checks, payroll, taxes, and insurance.
You should be able to contact the agency at any time, day or night, for monitoring and supervision of home health aides, for example, if there is an accident or complaint. In addition, agencies can rapidly find a replacement if a particular caregiver isn’t working out or a change in the care recipient’s condition necessitates a more qualified assistant.
Choose a company that has received a license from the state where it conducts business. The National Association of Home Care & Hospice’s online agency directory allows you to look up certifications and license status information. In addition, Medicare’s website offers a searchable list and assesses private home care providers.
Since no mediator is involved, hiring directly typically results in lower costs and higher wages for the assistant. You will need to gather references and conduct your background checks, though. In addition, you are in charge of keeping an eye on your home health aide and handling any issues that may arise.
If you’re hiring directly, you can consider getting referrals from friends and neighbors or asking around at senior centers or places of worship. A specialized direct-hire organization like Care Concierge NY is an additional choice. They manage networks of independent carers and assist in matching them with clients based on their needs and personal characteristics like common interests and pastimes.
HHAs cannot be switched for another. Every individual has a unique skill set, background dealing with various patient conditions, personality, and cultural background. To find someone suitable for your needs, be sure to be specific. A one-time finder’s fee, typically a percentage of the assistant’s gross compensation, is imposed by some direct-hire companies. However, they might be able to direct you to independent companies that offer payroll and benefits services.
If your loved one has long-term care insurance, inquire with the provider for details about whether paid home care is covered. In addition, financial assistance for in-home care may be available from the federal government if the care receiver is a veteran or is enrolled in Medicaid. To work with home health aides and retain a good one on staff, Gold gives the following advice.
- Treat the aids with respect due to a dedicated employee. Be mindful of their workload, the fact that they require regular breaks and downtime, and the duties they are qualified for or eager to learn. Work with them to adjust to alterations in the demands of your loved one or the workplace.
- Know the laws that apply to scheduling aides and paying at least the minimum wage at the local, state, and federal levels.
- Remember that home health aides are typically employed to take care of one person, a senior couple, or a single person, not an entire family.
You shouldn’t anticipate your old father’s caretaker to do everyone’s laundry or take your kids to school if he lives with you and needs home care. Of course, your home assistant might willingly accept these tasks, but you should discuss increased compensation if they are.
Safe Hands HHC excels at offering the most outstanding private in-home health care in Michigan, just like in other fields. We recognize how crucial it is for you to have support when things are tough. So we work hard to give our customers the greatest hospitable facilities.
For Assistance and Services, Visit: www.SafeHandsHHC.com