The Different Types of Home Health Aides

Home health aide listening through stethoscope to senior man’s heart.

Depending on the extent of the care you or your loved one require, your home health care aide will have different qualifications and skills. People tend to use the names of different types of home health aides interchangeably, which can make it difficult to differentiate between the care they provide. In this article, we’ll discuss a few of the most common types of home health aides, making it easy for you to tell which one is the right choice for you or your loved one.

Personal Care Aide

In-home personal care aides (PCAs) assist with running errands like shopping for groceries, chores around the house like laundry, housekeeping, and cooking, as well as personal cares like dressing, hygiene, and grooming. PCAs typically work with people who are physically challenged, cognitively impaired, or chronically ill.

For PCAs, formal education isn’t required, though some employers prefer proof of a high school diploma. They’re typically trained on the job, either by a more-experienced PCA or a registered nurse.

 Home Health Aide

A home health aide (HHA) typically works as a part of a larger home health care team, where they’re supervised by a registered nurse or therapist. To qualify, HHAs need 75 hours of nursing assistant training. Additional training is provided by each Home Health Care agency.

Home Health Aides can assist clients to perform their activities of daily life. Basic tasks include personal cares like assisting with using the bathroom, moving around, eating, and maintaining personal hygiene. It can also include chores like laundry, housekeeping, and cooking. They may also take the patient’s vitals and assist their supervisors with exercises or rehabilitative therapy.

Registered Nurse

Registered nurses, or RNs, are an integral a part of your home health care team. RNs have extensive qualifications, including completion of a nursing program, and passing a standardized examination for licensure.

When part of a larger team, an RN typically supervises other home health aides. With their extensive qualifications, they have the authority to create a personalized care plan and provide medical care to patients in their homes.

The composition of a home health care team is essential to getting you or your loved one the assistance you need. Contact Good Shepherd to learn more about the types of home health care we can provide.

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