What is a Home Health Aide?

A home health aide plays a significant role in the home health care ecosystem. They help people who are disabled, chronically ill, or cognitively impaired. Many times, older adults work with a home health aide because they need specific assistance. Individuals who are detail-oriented, have positive time management skills, physical stamina, and strong interpersonal skills can definitely resonate in being a home health aide. 

home health aide

Home Health Aide Duties:

Safety

  • Standby walking assistance
  • Help to prevent falls
  • Medication reminders
  • Manage dietary restrictions
  • Manage food expirations
  • Answer telephone or door

Independence

  • Walking & outdoor experiences
  • Pickup prescriptions
  • Grocery shopping
  • Transportation

Comfort

  • Bathing & dressing
  • Toileting & incontinent care
  • Bedbound assistance
  • Help with feeding
  • Application of lotions
  • Personal hygiene assistance

Activities

  • Range of motion exercises
  • Record vital signs
  • Games and mental stimulation
  • Supports for special needs pediatrics

Fulfillment

  • Car transportation to friends and/or family
  • Accompaniment to medical appointments
  • Escort to lunch & dinner
  • Visit neighbors & friends
  • Stimulating conversation
  • Letter writing & correspondence
  • Visit libraries, parks, senior centers

Pampered

  • Preparation of nutritious meals
  • Light housekeeping & laundry
  • Kitchen cleanup
  • Assistance with pet care
  • Playing games & activities
  • Attend events and socials 

 Dignity

  • Assist with clothing selection
  • Care directed by client
  • Life enhancing activities and hobbies

In addition, many home health aides are also professionally trained to check pulse, temperature, breathing, and a number of skilled nursing duties. A home health aide is responsible for specific in-home care needs in relation to:

  • Alzheimer’s and other related Dementia
  • Hypertension/Stroke Recovery
  • Heart Disease
  • Cancer Recovery
  • Hospice Care

Difference Between Caregivers and a Home Health Aide (HHA)?

Although the two are very similar in their roles in home care, one important distinction is that the caregiver is not a medically trained person and helps mostly with bathing, dressing, meals, and other housekeeping duties. A home health aide is trained properly with fundamental nursing responsibilities, and they are to have basic knowledge about skilled nursing services.

  1. You become a hero in the home. Caregiving is demanding and requires a lot of general labor and love. Many people become overwhelmed with the demands of caregiving and also balancing a full time job or children. A home health aide comes to the rescue, and provides peace of mind to families. The home health aide brings tender, loving, and compassionate care when the family is unable to do themselves.
  2. Your presence matters to a family in need. Once you enter a client’s home, you enter their personal lives. It’s important as a home health aide that your compassionate spirit helps remove barriers and help the families trust you in working in the personal aspects and dynamic of the home. Taking a genuine interest in the client’s lives, such as learning their hobbies or foods to eat will help you grow closer with them. The more you get to learn and understand them, they will start to look forward to your visits because your presence brings a positive impact in their lives.
  3. You change lives. When you care for a client, you also become involved in their families and communities. You become a part of their world and are responsible with their well-being. Once they realize how professional, reliable, and consistent you are in their lives, it brings a significant change of lifestyle in the client and their family’s home.
  4. You are unique and different from all others. Your personality and attributes as a a home health aide are unique to you, and with your individual talents you make the home health care experience an unforgettable and positive one! Not only can you teach your clients new things, but you will also learn from them. Being a home health aide provides opportunity to see the world from a new perspective.

What to Look for in a Home Health Aide (HHA):

How should you determine if an individual is appropriate to take care of your loved one?

Important qualities for a professional home health aide to have are:

  • Honest
  • Dependable
  • Objective
  • Caring
  • Sociable
  • Knowledgeable
  • Respectful

Situational Examples of Where We Help:

  • “My dad has Alzheimer’s disease and it’s getting too stressful for me to provide care for him.”
  • “My mom fell and is getting discharged from the hospital and I am not available during the day when she needs help around the house.”
  • “My parents do not drive and need someone to take them to the grocery store and to doctor appointments.”
  • “My dad lives in a community, but they do not provide one-on-one care. I need someone for a few hours each day to check-in on him to see if he needs anything.”
  • “My sister wants to stay in her own home, but needs help with cooking, bathing and help getting up and down the stairs.”
  • “I hired a caregiver directly, but I have no backup when they cannot work and I’m confused about all the taxes I might owe.”
  • “My dad is paralyzed from a stroke and needs a live-in caregiver to help around the clock.”
  • “I’m taking off too much time from work to care for my parents. I need someone to be there when I cannot.”

Considering Being a Home Health Aide as a Career?

Between 2012 and 2022, there is a projected growth rate of 48 percent in the home health aide working industry. There is unprecedented job security with minimal investment of time and proper training. With the aging “Baby Boomer” population increasing along with the preference for “aging in place,” the potential of the annual salaries rising is very prevalent.

If you desire to make a difference in people’s lives and change your perspective for the better, Five Star Home Health Care offers a FREE PCA Certification. Because we also operate our own home health care agency, that creates opportunities for immediate caregiver employment after certification. We offer the highest standard of services on all aspects of Personal Care. Our current PCA’s are properly trained with the highest standard of certifications, and have a wide range of experience in providing care for individuals of all backgrounds and needs. Check out this video to learn more.