How To Become A Caregiver

While no formal education is required to become a caregiver, many individuals do have high school diplomas before entering the occupation. On the job training for caregivers is usually provided by supervisors, nurses, and more experienced caregivers. Caregivers may be hired by individuals needing care directly or they may be hired by a home care agency, an adult family home, or a nursing home. Some states may not require prior experience because they will provide on-the-job training. Other states may require caregivers to have experience or be trained through an accredited institution: community colleges, vocational schools, home health care agencies, or through elderly care programs. On top of any experience or training requirements, states may run background checks on caregivers they may hire.

Work Environment And Duties:
Caregivers work in a number of different settings such as old people homes, nursing homes, private homes, as well as community care centers. Most work in a client's home while others work in small group homes or larger care communities. Caregivers, who are hired by individuals to cater to their private needs, usually visit their client's home every day or week for different duration periods. These periods may last from several weeks to several months and even years. A caregiver's job description basically entails providing companionship and comfort to their clients.

This may include helping their clients in their everyday tasks such as bathing or dressing. Elderly or disabled people may find it difficult to perform daily housekeeping chores, so caregivers may help them by doing their laundry, dusting, cleaning rooms, or washing dishes. Caregivers are responsible for their clients' physical as well as mental well-being, and other than helping out their clients in their daily chores and tasks like shopping for groceries or preparing meals, care givers may also arrange visits to doctors' offices or take them on an outing to a park or to visit a friend.

An important point that one needs to know on how to become a caregiver is the level of commitment and responsibility that this job entails. Caregivers need to possess a number of important qualities to effectively deal with their clients; these include a strong passion to work with elderly people and the disabled, a positive attitude , patience and compassions towards their clients, excellent communication skills, good time management skill, and strong physical stamina. Some clients may be suffering acute pain or mental stress and caregivers with good interpersonal skills who are sensitive to other people's emotions may be able to deal with them better.

Job Outlook And Pay:
Between 2010 and 2020, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is expecting the employment of personal care aides and caregivers to grow by 70 percent, and this growth rate is faster than the average for all occupations. One reason for this high growth rate is that elderly and disabled individuals may view home care from caregivers as less expensive than living in nursing homes. Elderly clients who need help with daily tasks and household chores find it more feasible to stay in their homes and employ caregivers. Regarding the annual pay, according to the BLS, caregivers earn around $15000 and above annually.


Q:How long does it take to become a caregiver?

A:You need at least a high school degree or its equivalent to become a caregiver. Apart from high school education, you will also need to pursue training and get a CPR certification. There are many vocational schools offering short courses and training programs for caregivers. These programs take 6-8 months to complete.

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