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Home Health Aides Career

Career Description

Provide routine individualized healthcare such as changing bandages and dressing wounds, and applying topical medications to the elderly, convalescents, or persons with disabilities at the patient's home or in a care facility. Monitor or report changes in health status. May also provide personal care such as bathing, dressing, and grooming of patient.

What Job Titles Home Health Aides Might Have

  • Certified Home Health Aide (CHHA)
  • Certified Nurses Aide (CNA)
  • Home Care Aide
  • Home Health Aide (HHA)

What Home Health Aides Do

  • Maintain records of patient care, condition, progress, or problems to report and discuss observations with supervisor or case manager.
  • Provide patients with help moving in and out of beds, baths, wheelchairs, or automobiles and with dressing and grooming.
  • Bathe patients.
  • Care for patients by changing bed linens, washing and ironing laundry, cleaning, or assisting with their personal care.
  • Entertain, converse with, or read aloud to patients to keep them mentally healthy and alert.
  • Plan, purchase, prepare, or serve meals to patients or other family members, according to prescribed diets.
  • Check patients' pulse, temperature, and respiration.
  • Provide patients and families with emotional support and instruction in areas such as caring for infants, preparing healthy meals, living independently, or adapting to disability or illness.
  • Perform a variety of duties as requested by client, such as obtaining household supplies or running errands.
  • Direct patients in simple prescribed exercises or in the use of braces or artificial limbs.
  • Massage patients or apply preparations or treatments, such as liniment, alcohol rubs, or heat-lamp stimulation.
  • Administer prescribed oral medications, under the written direction of physician or as directed by home care nurse or aide, and ensure patients take their medicine.
  • Care for children who are disabled or who have sick or disabled parents.
  • Accompany clients to doctors' offices or on other trips outside the home, providing transportation, assistance, and companionship.
  • Change dressings.

What Home Health Aides Should Be Good At

  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).

What Home Health Aides Should Be Interested In

  • Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

What Home Health Aides Need to Learn

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Sun iconThis career has a bright outlook.
Median Salary: $22,600

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.