What Is a Home Health Aide?

Ever wonder what a person who is a Home Health Aide (HHA) does? Read about what they do, their typical work life, and the necessary training and certification of HHAs.

By Erica Morely

What a Home Health Aide Does

Home Health Aides, or HHAs for short, are medically trained aides who work with patients on a personal, more regular basis, typically inside their private residences. There are a number of different reasons that people employ a HHA, most of which include a debilitating or chronic illness that requires consistent care from a professional. HHAs are also known to work with the elderly, caring for their specific needs as they age and can care less for their own health and safety.

HHAs have a wide range of capabilities and responsibilities, and they vary from patient to patient and even day to day. HHAs might assist with more simple tasks such as preparing and eating food, or even washing and using the restroom.

More advanced tasks such as outside travel, appointments, the pickup and administration of medication also all can fall under the jurisdiction of a HHA. HHAs can develop close relationships with their patients, and this allows them to engage in various activities that might seem outside the scope of a typical doctor.

Work Life of a Home Health Aide

HHAs can come from a variety of different employment backgrounds. Most either work individually for themselves, or are contracted out by an agency. After being setup with a particular patient, that patient’s household usually becomes the workplace of their HHA. HHAs can work with one patient, or split their time between multiple patients. It all depends on their work schedule and the physical needs of their patient.

The work of HHAs can be exhausting and physically demanding, which is why patience and empathy are abilities often associated with HHAs. Because of the personal nature of their work, at times HHAs also work with their patients on the weekends in addition to their time with them on weekdays.

Training and Certification

There is no state or federal laws that say that HHAs have to have a high school diploma. However, if a HHA is working for an agency that receives federal money, than that HHA is required by federal law to meet certain training standards. The standards met by the HHA are 75 hours of job training, followed by 16 hours of work in the field supervised by a doctor or fellow HHA. After those two periods, there is a state certification exam to pass. Each state varies its own laws on HHA regulation, and some vary slightly with extra required training.

Becoming a Home Health Aide is wonderful career where you will help to improve the quality of people’s lives. It is very rewarding and also a field high in demand for the right people.

Find out more by visiting http://www.HowToBecomeAHomeHealthAide.com

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