Senior caregiver training requirements vary by state, based on state law requirements for licensed senior home care agencies and private duty senior care (caregivers hired and paid privately - this is still an old-school term used in the industry: "private duty").
Why do states regulate senior care? Because most senior care fraud starts in the home by a loved one or caregiver. Senior care can take an emotional toll on the caregiver and sometimes this can lead even good caregivers to take a wrong turn to justify financial, emotional or physical elder abuse.
In addition, many of our modern employment laws, such as payroll taxes which an employer takes out of each check for the employee and also contributes additional money for each payroll, provide for Social Security benefits, Worker's Compensation benefits and insurance protections and healthcare benefits.
States are passing legislation to protect both the caregiver and the senior.
Caregiverlist provides a training portal to allow senior care companies to easily train all of their caregivers and track the training renewals while giving the caregivers a competency exam to test retention of the training skills.
Family caregivers and hire-direct caregivers can also take online caregiver training to learn basic caregiving skills to make sure they are maintaining safety and staying current with elder-abuse laws, privacy laws and the latest Alzhiemer's disease care and approved medications and other age-related disease care. Caregivers may view training required in their state and join the Professional Association of Caregivers to receive a t-shirt and lapel pin along with their online training course.
Receive Online Caregiver Training + T-shirt and Lapel Pin
Certified caregiver training allows senior caregivers to verify their knowledge and understanding of specific caregiving skills. Many people still do not realize that the senior care industry has established specific training mandates for senior caregivers in many states as senior caregiving has become a profession.
What is certified caregiver training?
This training guides individuals through the basic caregiving skills and explains necessary terms and safety requirements and job duties for professional senior caregivers.
- Caregiver training concepts usually include the following skills:
- Safety (for Emergencies and Environmental such as Hurricanes, Earthquakes)
- Care Plan Duties and Care Plan Notes
- Personal Care
- Understanding Age-related Illnesses such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and other forms of Dementia
- Safe Transfers
- Communication Skills
- Identifying Elder Abuse (Physical, Emotional, Sexual, Financial)
- Personal Care
- Safe Environment and Infection Control
- Meal Assistance
- Emotional Care for Aging Issues such as Death and Grieving
Senior caregivers are needed to fill the need for senior care services as the senior care industry continues to grow. More than 200 senior home care agencies provide care services in the top 20 metropolitan cities in the U.S.A. Part-time and full-time job positions are available for caring individuals to be senior caregivers.
Senior care services are regulated in each state, just like other businesses. Some states do require specific caregiver training and renewal training each year. This enables caregivers to keep up with caregiving skills and any new requirements that may have been established. For example, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act was passed in 1996 and now requires caregivers to keep any information about a senior client's medical records and personal health information private and training allows caregivers to understand what information can and cannot be shared.
How to become a professional senior caregiver to be hired by a senior care company:
- Read the Caregiver Job Description to Understand Companion Caregiving Job Duties
- Obtain a Professional Multi-State Background Check, to Check last 3 Counties of Residency
- Verify Background Check Accuracy of Information
- Organize Available Schedule to Work
- Learn Caregiving Skills by Reading Books and Movies
- Consider Online Caregiver Training Courses (Training is Required in Illinois, California and Many other States)
Remember, senior caregiving involves caring for one individual senior when providing senior care services in the home. The senior will build an emotional relationship with the caregiver which is why it is very important for caregivers to commit to a consistent schedule and be reliable. Part-time caregivers are needed but just be sure you are organized with your schedule and provide only the days and times you are truly available to work.
Background checks have evolved with technology but the negative of the computerized results is that many are returning inaccurate information. Especially if you have a common name and have moved frequently, it is more likely you will have results returned that may not be accurate for your name and social security number and this is why you should run a background check on yourself each year. Each of the background check companies offer a process to follow to correct any inaccurate information. Be careful of where you buy your background check as some resellers only offer a social security number confirmation for a name, rather than pulling information from criminal courthouse records.
Take a practice caregiver training quiz to learn about caregiving skills. Online caregiver training allows you to become a certified caregiver in states with caregiver training requirements. After you become a certified caregiver, you may consider becoming a Certified Nursing Aide. C.N.A. training requirements are mandated by a federal law, but states may have additional requirements that require more C.N.A. training hours than the federal law. You can find C.N.A. schools in your area in the Caregiverlist C.N.A. School Directory.
Online caregiver training allows anyone to learn caregiving skills and take the course at their own pace. Find caregiver training requirements in your state or just take the basic caregiver training course to get started as this course meets the requirements for beginning caregivers in California, Illinois and more states. Senior care companies hire caregivers for part-time and full-time positions each week and you can be considered for a new caregiving job by submitting your job application on the industry's caregiving career center.
Family caregivers and professional caregivers can find how others navigate the caregiving journey and learn how to better deal with the aging process by watching these caregiving movies and reading these caregiving books.
Senior caregiving services are continuing to grow as more seniors, especially seniors living in developed countries, are living much longer lives than previous generations. Why are seniors living longer?
- Better Nutrition
- Better Healthcare Access
- Better Emergency Treatment (Heart Attacks, Strokes)
All of these impact the ability for a person to live a longer life. And one of the biggest reasons is the availability of someone to provide caregiving services. We aren't living in a little house on the prairie anymore. Because adult children very often do not live within a 1 hour drive of their parent's home, the need for paid caregiving services has skyrocketed in the last decade.
Now that senior caregiving has become a licensed profession in many states, training requirements have been created to protect both the senior and the caregiver.
California's new home care services law
requires all California caregivers to be trained in 2 hours of orientation training, 3 hours of safety and infection control training and 5 hours in core competency training. Knowing how to effectively communicate with a senior and manage daily activities makes a huge difference in the success of the caregiving services.
- Here is what you need to know about senior caregiver training:
- Some states require specific training (See California's caregiver training requirements to be a certified caregiver).
- Some states require training but do not mandate the exact type of training (See Basic Caregiver Skill training).
- Unlike Certified Nursing Aide (C.N.A.) training, which is required by federal law, caregiver training is regulated by each state.
Companion caregivers often assist seniors with memory loss, who may need a caregiver for several years (former President Ronald Reagan had caregiving services for more than 10 years as his memory loss progressed). Caregivers assisting seniors to recover from a major medical event such as a stroke or hip replacement, need additional training to learn how to safely transfer the senior, dress the senior and maintain a safe environment. In addition, understanding what to do as a caregiver, if an environmental emergency such as an earthquake or blizzard happens, also is part of caregiver training. Just as with any profession, being properly trained allows quality care to be delivered. Digital caregiver training now assists caregivers to easily become trained and certified to meet their state's requirements.
Caregiving as a profession has grown significantly in the last decade, with a 40% growth in the number of senior home care agencies since 2008. Caregiverlist's Employment Index profiles the growth in senior home care along with the top cities where seniors age-in-place (or relocate).
Last week, the Wall Street Journal profiled the shortage of C.N.A.'s for nursing homes along with the high turnover and potential need for higher pay and other benefits for certified nursing aides.
Another reason for the shortage of professional caregivers is because many people do not realize caregiving can be a professional job with a career path. The large growth in senior home care agencies is because senior care is moving to the home. Seniors often find they prefer one-on-one care in their own home rather than relocating to a nursing home or assisted living community.
This means anyone with a caring personality may be employed by a senior home care agency. In addition, the growth in the number of seniors with memory loss - the Alzheimer's Association reports that nearly 1/3rd of all Americans will have some memory loss, with the risk increasing the longer we live. This means seniors who are physically healthy -or enjoying healthy aging, will suddenly need caregiving services just to maintain meals and daily activities.
Companion caregivers assist with medication reminders, meal preparation and daily activities as well as just being a friend to the senior. Certified Nursing Aides, however, must obtain a certificate in their state by passing a state exam after attending an approved school. C.N.A. programs can be anywhere from 6 to 12 weeks and some programs offer evening courses.
Anyone interested in exploring becoming a senior caregiver can apply for a caregiving job or Refer-a-Friend to be a caregiver to win t-shirts, training and gift certificates each week on Caregiverlist. Remember, caregiving delivers fulfillment beyond a paycheck while also providing a needed service to seniors. Online training is also available to gain the necessary skills to provide safe caregiving services and be obtained through Caregiverlist's Certified Training program.
Certification for senior caregivers means a caregiver has been trained on the basic caregiving skills and passed a competency exam to verify they completed the course work. Many skills must be mastered in order to deliver quality caregiving to a senior who may have challenges with mobility and memory, in addition to dealing with age-related illnesses.
Senior care companies nationwide, as part of the National Private Duty Association, now renamed the Home Care Association of America, came together to establish basic training skills for professional caregivers. The state of Illinois adopted these basic training requirements as part of licensing requirements for senior home care agencies in 2008. Most states do not have formal training requirements but suggest basic training skills be provided at orientation for new caregivers. New Jersey and Florida do have training requirements for home health aides.
Family caregivers, along with professional caregivers who would like to formerly begin a caregiving career may now take these industry established basic caregiver training through an online course to be certified. Senior care companies continue to seek high quality caregivers to fill ongoing part-time and full-time jobs and access Caregiverlist's proprietary hiring system to hire each week. You may apply to a professional caregiving job on Caregiverlist and be considered for multiple openings in your area.
Winter storms drive even the most hale and hearty of us to seek the shelter of warmth indoors. While it’s enticing to stay inside by a roaring fire (or space heater) snuggled under a blanket with a favorite book, I think we can all agree, and studies show, exercise is just as important, if not more so, in the winter than other times of the year. So it’s imperative to get up and get moving.
Fitness classes for seniors are a great option, as is a simple walk around the mall. But what about the transport? In inclement weather, even getting in and out of a car can be daunting. How does a senior, with limited mobility on the best of days, keep strong, flexible and fit when snow and ice keeps them housebound?
Caregivers can help with a regiment of at home exercises for seniors. Remember — it’s always important to consult a doctor before starting a home workout plan.
Ideally, a comprehensive workout plan will address endurance, strength, flexibility and balance.
If possible, invest in a low-impact piece of exercise equipment, such as a stationary bike. It’s great aerobic exercise and will strengthen leg muscles. For those who are very limited in their mobility, check out the Sit and Be Fit series, either on YouTube or your local PBS station. Learn about Chair Yoga, which is a great way to increase blood flow and fluidity of movement.
Resistance bands and free weights, if used with caution, can increase muscle mass and promote strength. Building strength can help counteract the weakness and frailty usually associated with aging.
Balance is a special concern for the elderly. According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention), one in every three adults 65 years and older falls. Many times those falls can cause severe injuries, such as breaks and head traumas. Regular exercise will help a senior bounce back more quickly from an injury or illness, as well as help prevent those falls in the first place.
Exercise is an essential part of aging well. Exercise helps alleviate depression — which can be a problem for the elderly, especially during these dark, cold months. It can also help prevent osteoporosis, keep diabetes at bay, enhance energy, and generally make a person feel better. If you’re not sure where to start, consult a physical therapist or senior fitness expert. If I’m a caregiver, that’s a gift I want to give to the senior for whom I care. That’s a gift I want to give to myself.
If you are a senior caregiver, consider Caregiverlist’s Caregiver Training and Certification. One of the training modules deals specifically with promoting and maintaining good mobility, and that’s a skill that will make you more attractive to future employers.
Training for caregivers – where do you find it, how much does it cost and how do you know which training is the right one for you? These are questions we are often asked by both professional caregivers and family caregivers. We enjoyed meeting some of our professional Chicago Caregivers this week who visit Caregiverlist.com to apply for a senior care job position whenever they are looking for caregiver employment (and use our resume tools and training information) - we look forward to meeting more of you at our job fairs.
Caregiver training involves learning skills to safely care for a senior’s physical needs, emotional needs and understanding how to monitor signs of new conditions such as depression or elder abuse.
Senior caregivers are hired as:
· Companion Caregivers
· Certified Caregivers
· Certified Nursing Aides (C.N.A.’s)
· Certified Home Health Aides (C.H.H.A.’s in NJ, CA)
Companion caregivers often work with seniors who have memory loss but just need a “companion” to keep their day on track. Certified Caregivers meet the 10-hour caregiver training requirement that has been established by many states and by the senior care industry. Certified Nursing Assistants, or Aides, are called C.N.A.’s and must complete a state-approved course and then pass the C.N.A. exam. Every 2 years a C.N.A. must renew their certification.
Becoming a caregiver for a senior can begin as a companion caregiver. You may then take the 10-hour online caregiver certification course to be a certified non-medical senior caregiver. Senior care companies often provide caregiver training but taking the online caregiver training course will help you know what to expect when you begin working as a caregiver. You may also take a sample C.N.A. test to understand the skills taught at C.N.A. schools (and find an approved C.N.A. school in your area).
Apply for a caregiver job in your area, as senior care companies are constantly hiring in order to keep up with their staffing needs in this growing industry (seniors may quickly need care services after a stroke, hip replacement or when memory loss accelerates).
Caregiver pay is above minimum wage and can range from $8.50 to $16 per hour, depending upon what part of the country you live in and the level of skills required. Benefits such as payroll taxes, performance bonuses, paid vacation, flexible hours and health insurance also are available.
Caregiver job descriptions and caregiver stories are also available in Caregiverlist’s Caregiver Career Center to help you learn more about becoming a senior caregiver. You may also join the Professional Association of Caregivers to receive the 10-hour certified online training and a t-shirt and lapel pin and additional information to begin your caregiver career. Both family caregivers and professional caregivers may join the P.A.C.
Caregiverlist just attended a few C.N.A. school job fairs this week and all of the graduating C.N.A. students who talked with us shared they find working as a senior caregiver to be very fulfilling. While you may have some days which present challenges, when you become a senior caregiver you will go home each day knowing that you are appreciated. These C.N.A.’s also shared with us that they appreciate knowing they can continue to grow their career as there will continue to be many jobs in this industry which is predicted to be the top category for jobs in the next decade. Apply for a senior caregiver job now in your area.
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Caregiver training for senior caregivers - both professional caregivers and family caregivers - involves learning many skills, including how to manage the hands-on care, such as safely transfering a senior from a bed to chair, along with learning the emotional skills of assisting a senior who is experiencing memory loss.
Becoming a professional caregiver requires caregiver training, as senior care also involves managing a care plan, keeping care notes, monitoring changes in health conditions and being aware of signs of depression. Specific training for age-related diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease are also necessary when caring for seniors with these illnesses. Seniors with hearing loss and vision loss also require a special skill set from a caregiver.
Caregiverlist provides Senior Care Briefs to assist caregivers to learn how to care for seniors with specific illnesses and age-related diseases.
Senior Care Briefs include training for:
- Hearing Loss
- Hip Replacement
- Macular Degeneration
- Alzheimer's Disease
- Medication Monitoring
Family members who provide care for a senior loved one quickly understand why certification is necessary for senior caregivers and nursing aides. Review a sample certified nursing aide exam to undestand the skills taught in these courses which usually involve about 120 hours of training.
Certification for senior caregivers can be obtained in a 10-hour online course. The training offers the basic caregiver skills including mobility assistance for seniors, nutrition, communication skills and understanding elder abuse. Many times one family member will carry the burden of the caregiving. By taking a caregiver training course, you will have better skills to apply to caregiving. This online training course allows you to learn each module at your own pace and re-take the test again if you need to revisit skills in order to score the minimum of 80% in order to receive the certificate.
Senior caregivers may gain experience as a companion caregiver working for a senior home care agency as many times companion positions are part-time. Senior home care agencies do provide a Care Plan for each client and a schedule of activities for each day. Apply for senior caregiver positions in your area to begin working as a senior caregiver.
Senior care has been predicted to be a top employer in the coming decade as the Baby Boomer population ages. By beginning as a companion caregiver you can advance to become a Certified Nursing Aide, Licensed Practical Nurse and Registered Nurse. Find C.N.A. schools near you to understand the admissions process.
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