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How to Become Certified as a Caregiver in Pennsylvania

caregiver certification pa

Different Caregiver Jobs Plus Caregiver Training Requirements

Being a caregiver is such a rewarding career path! Every day you work as a caregiver, you get to make a difference in the lives of others, helping them live fuller, happier, and healthier lives.

Being a caregiver requires compassion, great communication skills, and the ability to work with a family member who is a primary home caregiver. There are many different caregiver settings, from assisted living to home care, and different caregiver jobs, such as home health aides and certified nursing assistant (CNAs).

Learn more: Caregiver vs CNA.

These differences can affect the type of care you offer, whether it’s personal care (e.g. bathing, dressing) or home health. There are also different caregiver training requirements needed for different caregiver positions. Most positions require some sort of training and/or certification.

A training program often includes personal care information, infection control, and how to create or work from a care plan. However, this varies depending on the state in which you are working to become a certified caregiver. In this article, we’ll look at the duties of each job, becoming a caregiver in Pennsylvania, and any caregiving certificate you may need.

Caregiver Career Options and Their Duties

Some of the different positions under the umbrella of caregiver include:

  • Personal Aide: A personal aide provides personal care, such as bathing, dressing, toileting, meal assistance, mobility assistance, transportation, and light housekeeping.
  • Home Health Aide: The type of care a home health aide offers is similar to a personal aide, however they receive additional medical training to be able to take and monitor a patient’s vital signs.
  • CNA: A certified nursing assistant is not a nurse, however this caregiver supports nurses. This includes mobility, bathing, dressing and assistance with feeding. They also check and monitor patients’ vital signs, ensure safety protocols are followed, and ensure patients’ nutritional needs are met.
  • Nurse: A nurse provides medical care for patients, including assessing their condition, recording histories and new symptoms, making observations, administering medications and treatments and making recommendations or changes to a care plan.

Certification and Caregiver Training Requirements

The certification and caregiver training requirements for different caregiving positions in Pennsylvania are as follows:

  • Personal Aide/Caregiver: An in-home caregiver in Pennsylvania is required to complete an 8 hour course and pass an exam to become a certified caregiver. The course covers basic training such as infection control, communication skills, and emergency procedures.
  • Home Health Aide: A home health aide has three options. The first option is they must complete 75 hours of training, including 16 hours of clinical instruction. Every year, they are required to have 12 hours of continuing education. They also need to pass a criminal background check and child abuse clearance. Option two is nurse aide certification. If you want to advance in the field, this is the option you may want to choose as this is the first step to becoming a qualified nurse. The Pennsylvania Department of Education can help you find a certification and training program in your area. Option three is to receive training through a home healthcare agency.
  • CNA: This certified caregiver must pass a criminal background check, pass a physical exam, and complete a state-approved CNA training program that is at least 80 hours long. You must also pass the Pennsylvania National Nurse Aide Assessment Program within 24 months of completing your training program.
  • Nurse: This licensed care professional  must complete an approved nursing program and be awarded a degree in nursing. There is also an examination in which applicants must receive a passing grade. There is no initial experience requirement for licensure but there are 3 hours of required board-approved education in child abuse recognition and reporting for initial licensure, and 30 hours of continuing education required for biennial renewal of license, with 2 hours being in child abuse recognition and reporting.

Become a Caregiver and Work With All American Home Care!

All American Home Care is looking to hire compassionate individuals wanting to make a difference in the lives of others! We offer many different career options, from caregiver or home health aide, to CNA or nurse! We offer competitive benefits including a higher salary, a signing bonus, plus free health and life insurance! Learn more about our open positions and apply online today!

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