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How to Become a Massachusetts HHA Certified: Tuition, Pay, and Job Outlook

    How to Become a Nursing, Psychiatric, and Home Health Aide

    The number of elderly people in the United States is increasing, which is why the need for home attendants and housekeepers is growing. Most American retirees prefer to stay at home rather than in a nursing home in their old age, so the need for caregivers is increasing.

    The work of a home attendant (care for an elderly person) or home health aid does not require knowledge of the language and experience. But you need to get certified to get a good job. These professions give an excellent start for immigrants to the United States, as they are highly paid and always have vacancies.

    What do you need to know about the profession of a home attendant?

    It is a home assistant that provides care for the elderly. The duties of a home attendant include dressing, hygiene, transportation, food preparation, feeding, conducting activities aimed at maintaining cognitive abilities, and communication support. Home helpers care for the elderly with dementia, Alzheimer’s, or physical disabilities.

    Home attendants are divided into two categories:

    • Non-certified caregivers are hired by families directly.
    • Certified assistants work with domestic staffing companies.

    How to get a home attendant certificate in the USA?  There are special educational institutions for this, but the selection criteria in different states may differ. Before contacting a school to get any training courses including medical cpr training, familiarize yourself with its requirements for students.

    Studying costs money, so applicants are interested in how much a home attendant is paid in the USA to understand how soon the courses will pay off. In recruitment companies, an hour of work costs $15, and the minimum annual salary is about $30,000.

    The hiring of an uncertified nurse is usually done directly by the family. Often, the helper is offered a live-in job to be near the elderly person around the clock. It can be difficult, but with such conditions, the salary is much higher – $ 95-100 thousand per year.

    HHA certificate: what is it?

    The abbreviation HHA stands for home health aid. Accordingly, it is a document confirming your knowledge in the field of service and care for the elderly. You must provide your services legally and receive appropriate benefits from the employer.

    How to get an HHA certificate?

    The Code of Federal Regulations specifies all the conditions for this. It also contains a list of conditions for each state because individual regions have their criteria for obtaining a certificate.

    What are the types of certificates in the USA?

    HHA is a document that allows you to provide proper care for older people at home, including feeding, bathing, transporting, and keeping conversations.

    Personal Care Assistant (PCA) is a certification for a personal assistant whose responsibilities include assisting in the care of an elderly person and housekeeping and conducting preventive activities to maintain cognitive functions.

    A Guide to Your First Day with a New Home Health Aide - HomeWorks

    How to study and get a certificate?

    If you want to find a job, you need to familiarize yourself with the rules for obtaining the desired license and find the right school option. 

    Requirements for candidates

    Schools for the training of assistants usually put forward minimum requirements for prospective students:

    • Age – from 18 years.
    • High school diploma or equivalent.
    • Must be able to pass a criminal background check.
    • Capacity to follow written and verbal instructions.
    • No bad habits.
    • Willingness and ability to learn.
    • Good physical condition.

    What will they teach you at home attendant courses?

    The home care aide education program covers some vital areas. The course will teach you:

    • assistance with personal hygiene;
    • about symptoms and signs of health problems;
    • how to measure vital signs;
    • how to move bedridden patients, and more.

    Finding the best home attendant courses in Massachusetts is not difficult because there are many specialized institutions with different programs. But first, it is better to decide on a study plan.

    Passing training courses

    The Massachusetts program includes at least 75 hours of study, of which:

    • 75 hours in the classroom – 45 hours of lectures and 20 hours of demonstrations.
    • 16 hours of clinical training under the supervision of specialists.

     Different educational institutions, from private agencies to hospitals, are ready to teach basic skills. But be aware that the latter programs do not always meet the requirements for obtaining a state certificate.

    To take courses in care for the sick at home or the elderly will take about a month. After completing the home health aide certification training, you will be issued a certificate, based on which you can get a job in a company that recruits home assistants. Working in an agency is different because you get all the necessary benefits – medical insurance, paid sick leave, vacation, and more.