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Is First-Aid Training Compulsory for Home Health Aides?

The caregiving role played by home health aides

Home health aides play a crucial role in ensuring that elderly citizens enjoy good health and overall well-being. These senior people may be suffering from a debilitating illness or may be disabled due to an injury, but they prefer to live their lives independently.

Home health aides are there to support such people. Their typical role as caregivers involves changing bandages, administering medications on time, doing grocery shopping and paying monthly utility bills.

home health aides

Home health aides are involved in the most intimate aspects of their patients’ lives compared to other healthcare workers. However, these caregivers are generally not supervised.

Since home health aides are required to ensure the holistic health and well-being of senior citizens, they must maintain caution while delivering their services. Any negligence on their part could cause them to face a lawsuit from the patient or his or her family. That’s when they should consider getting a home health liability insurance to cover their businesses.

First-aid training for home health aides

Although home health aides are not as skilled as professional nurses, they do have to go through a training process for them to be able to deliver the required services to patients. They work with patients who require a higher level of medical and physical care—something that typical family caregiving cannot provide.

Home health aides don’t have to necessarily go through formal medical education; however, they can pursue training and certification courses to work as a part of a professional home health agency. As a part of this curriculum, first-aid training is an important subject for anyone who wishes to pursue the profession of a home health aide.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the educational qualifications required to become a home health aide differ from employer to employer. Those caregivers who work with agencies that are funded by Medicaid or Medicare are required to complete a formal training in the field.

On the other hand, those of them who work with private companies are not required to do so. They also receive on-the-job training from nursing assistants, registered nurses, and more experienced home health aides.

In the United States, it is believed that anyone who’s involved in the healthcare sector should get first-aid training, along with cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) training. This makes them skilled at responding to emergency situations, such as when they injure themselves or suffer a cardiac arrest. There are many aged citizens who do require home health aides who can provide first-aid and CPR treatment when an emergency arises.

Being recommended vs. compulsory

The reality of first-aid training for home health aides is, however, different from what it seems. Home health aides are recommended to get formal training in first-aid and CPR treatment, but the training is not compulsory in many states. There have been instances when an aged patient was being looked after a caregiver who wasn’t trained in providing first-aid and CPR treatment, leading to an unfortunate outcome.

Many experts believe that first-aid training should be made compulsory for home health aides. This would help them promote the safety and health of their patients, prevent deaths, and deliver the high-quality service expected of them. There’s a popular view prevailing that supports the idea of Federal and State governments making the training and certification a legal mandate for home health aides.

Areas covered under first-aid training for home health aides

If a home health aide is trained to provide first-aid to patients, they will be able to deal with the following situations:

  1. Bruises: Owing to the fragility of the skin of seniors, bruising is a common problem for them. Home health aides should be able to treat them and be aware of the factors that may be causing them. It can be the use of blood thinners or any other medication.
  2. Cuts: Aged people are prone to cuts—something that takes time to heal. Home health aides should be able to provide the necessary first-aid, such as cold pads, antiseptics, and other treatments on time.
  3. CPR: This training equips home health aides with the various CPR techniques, which are required when a patient suffers a sudden cardiac arrest.

Given the critical role that home health aides play in the lives of senior citizens who are ill and need help, first-aid training is highly recommended for them. This training will surely help them promote the overall wellbeing and safety of their customers.

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