Health care aides are essential workers who provide the assistance, support and care required to benefit those in need. Health care worker roles respected and required now more than ever before, and that doesn’t appear to be changing any time soon.
Health care aides (HCAs) have received accreditation from post secondary institutions that gives them the knowledge and skills to work in hospitals, nursing homes, continuing care facilities, and the homes of their patients or clients.
The role can be designated as a residential carer, mental health aide, home health aide, psychiatric aide, client care assistant, and nursing attendants.
Although we may take health care aides for granted, they make important contributions to society and community health as a whole by keeping our most vulnerable members safe, comfortable and healthy. Here are 10 remarkable ways that health care aides help us:
The patients and clients of health care aides may require the support of their caregiver to complete everyday tasks such as brushing their teeth, grooming, going to the bathroom and dressing. It is important to everyone as we age or find ourselves in a situation where we need daily assistance, that our pride and humility stay intact and we remain as independent as possible when it comes to personal care. Health care aides are aware of this and are there for us when we need them the most.
An article by Aging Care talks about the importance of activities of daily living (ADLs) and how losing our ability to provide ourselves with our basic needs, as a result of a medical condition or general weakness, can severely affect our quality of life and can cause our health conditions to worsen. Health care aides are there for all of us in our time of need and help us to stay independent, comfortable, and even live longer.
As well as personal care, health care aides also provide the home care needed for us to remain in our comfort zones for as long as we can. Household chores that health care aides will help us to do are cleaning the floor, washing up, cleaning clothes, doing the laundry, watering the plants, and even organizing a trip to the grocery store or the delivery of our favourite groceries at our request.
As many of us age or suffer from ailments or disabilities that could result in us needing care, we prefer to remain at home or in a familiar surroundings. Health care aides helping us out with domestic and household tasks when we are unable to do so ourselves could prevent us from straining or hurting ourselves when we are in an unstable condition, and help our homes to stay clean, tidy, and an all round pleasant place to live.
Health care aides do not only take care of us as we age, they also provide the comfort and support needed if we suffer from a disability, an accident that requires short-term assistance until we’re back on our feet, or a condition that requires continuing care.
Individuals with Down syndrome, autism, and traumatic brain injury will require a health care aide to assist them for the long-term, while an injury or illness could mean that you need help for a shorter period of time. A health care aide will be there to provide services including, dressing, eating, bathing, meal preparation, respite care, wound care, and medication administration.
They will also offer emotional and mental support at the times when you need it most. No matter what happens to you or your loved ones in the future, you can rest assured that a health care aide will always be there to help you.
At some point in all of our lives we will require the assistance of others to help us deal with a disease or ailment. If a family member or a friend is not able to help us out at our time of need for whatever reason, a health care aide will be there for us.
As well as caring for different types of people, health care aides will also provide the services needed for various conditions and illnesses. They help us take charge of our chronic illnesses or diseases by increasing our self management and comfort levels as we deal with something that nobody really wants to go through. They do this by learning about our needs, utilizing their knowledge about the illness or disease, and providing the best care that they possibly can.
Health care aides will also help us when dealing with physical or cognitive disabilities as we get older, and will help those of us that need end-of-life care.
Some people will be unable to drive or physically get themselves to a place that they need to be due to an ailment or condition that affects them physically or cognitively. The role of a health care aide is to help you in whichever way is needed, and sometimes we need to go somewhere. Our caregivers will organize transportation, book doctor’s appointments, outings, visits to friends and family, or anything else that may require us to leave the comfort of our homes.
Health care aides get into the profession because they care and they have an intense need to help people and ease their pain or suffering. Caregivers will often go above and beyond to cater to the wants and needs of their clients or patients, sometimes even using their own care to drive you places.
While health care aides cannot issue every kind of medication, they will help in whatever way they can when it comes to easing your pain. When studying for their qualification, health care aides will learn how to administer some medications to their clients or patients. They will also have done thorough research in the effects and requirements of the medication to keep you safe and healthy as best they can.
Health care aides are very knowledgeable on the subject of medication administration and will be there to support you through your treatment and the course of your care.
As well as monitoring the prescriptions and medication of a patient, health care aides will also monitor you and your condition. They will be equipped with the relevant documentation and resources to make an informed judgement about your state, and will be able to inform the necessary people if there is a change or worry that causes them concern.
A health care aide will monitor a patient’s vital signs, temperature, breathing, and overall condition regularly, while taking the samples needed to test and provide the best care possible.
This requirements and certifications of a health care aide makes the role a very important one, and shows the importance of their studies. Karen Whalen, HCA Co-ordinator at ABM College says, “HCAs [are] an extremely important part of the Healthcare system. They are the people that give direct care to clients in all different areas.” HCAs must have the relevant knowledge and skills to be able to understand the needs of their clients and provide the best care possible.
While you are suffering from a condition or illness that affects your own health, it also takes a huge toll on your friends and family who will often care for you despite the effects it will have on their own time, health and finances. Family members are often the primary caregivers to people who cannot help themselves.
A health care aide understands that family members of sick or aging people need care and support too as they go through emotional and psychological hardships while trying to do their best to be there for their loved one.
The professional caregiver will become a part of the everyday life of the patient and their loved ones, and so will get to know and understand the needs of everyone and try to provide them with as much support and acknowledgment as they can.
Health care aides are good at their jobs and provide excellent care to us all when we need it because they love what they do. It takes a special quality in a person to be able to care for someone in need of assistance and really make a difference to that person’s life. Health care aides and all other caregivers are incredible people who do remarkable work for us and the community as a whole.
If you think that being a health care aide is your calling in life, why not check out our 5 Reasons You Should Consider A Career As A Live-In Home Health Care Aide blog, or take our Career Training Quiz to find out more.