You’ve decided to pursue a career as a home health aide or HHA. That’s wonderful! So, where should you begin? Here’s our basic guide on how to become a home health aide.
Steps to Becoming an HHA
Earn Your High School Diploma or GED
Technically, you may work as a home health aide without a high school diploma, but most HHAs have one. And it’s easier to find a job if you have the right education. What if returning to school isn’t an option? Don’t worry. You can earn the equivalent of a high school degree or GED. Although rules vary by state, usually you need to pass four subject tests. Total costs range from $0 (Connecticut) to $150 (South Dakota).
Get Your Driver’s License
Again, it’s possible to become a home health aide without a driver’s license. However, it’s helpful to have your own transportation to and from work. Also keep in mind, many HHAs visit multiple clients throughout the day. In addition, some positions may require you to run errands and/or provide transportation for your patient.
Build Your Resume
Having previous experience can help you land an HHA job faster. Plus, you’ll have a better idea of exactly what the job involves. Nursing homes, senior centers, and organizations like Hospice always are looking for volunteers. Or if you’d like to gain experience AND earn a paycheck, consider working as a caregiver or homemaker first. Even though these roles are similar to HHA positions, they have fewer education/certification requirements.
Sign Up for an HHA Training Program
In most cases, home health aides need certification. Different states have different requirements as do some federally funded programs like Medicare. Generally, certified HHAs complete 75 hours of training (including 16 hours of on-the-job training) plus 12 hours of continuing education each year. Some states, like Wisconsin, also require HHAs to have CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) certification, while others, like Massachusetts, do not. Before you find and pay for an HHA certification program on your own, be aware many staffing agencies offer this training for FREE! Simply run an online search for “home healthcare staffing agencies near me” and make a few calls. You could save yourself quite a bit of money.
Apply for Jobs
You have the right education credentials, experience, and certification. Great! Now, it’s time to land that job. Luckily, HHAs are in high demand. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 34% job growth in the next ten years! Try searching online, checking the job boards, or, again, connecting with a local staffing agency. Then, start sending out resumes and soon you’ll be on your way to launching your career as a home health aide.
Are You Ready to Become a Home Health Aide?
Anodyne Staffing Services is urgently hiring home health aides in Waltham, Massachusetts, and the surrounding areas. You can even begin working as a caregiver or homemaker, and Anodyne will provide and pay for your HHA training. Browse our available openings and discover your next opportunity today!