Being free and autonomous is a gift for humanity, and we all truly cherish that. If you have a family member, friend, or spouse nearing retirement age, there is a chance that sooner or later, you will be looking into hiring a home health aide.
As per the home care association of America (HCAOA), individuals getting 65 years or above have a 70% possibility of requiring some sort of home health services, whether through assisted living or at home.
Now you might be wondering what these home health aides (HHAs) do and why are they so much in demand these days? Well, let’s discuss some of the core responsibilities of home health aides one by one;
What does a home health aide (HHA) do?
The primary responsibility of a home health aide (HHA) is to assist the client in their activities of daily living to make them live independently. Sometimes you may need a home health aide for full assistance (such as for immobile patients), whereas at other times, you might need them for partial assistance (in the case when the patient is up and about but needs some assistance). The best part of home healthcare is that people can get it in a comfortable environment.
Besides that, home healthcare is not only cost-effective but also the care is tailored as per the client’s needs. Similarly, the duration for which a client needs a home health aide is variable, ranging from a few weeks to years, depending upon the client’s condition. Home health aides usually work to care for various populations of different ages, including children, adults, differently-abled clients, and older clients; however, most of their clients are aging seniors.
Now let’s dive deeper to discuss three of the core duties that they usually perform;
- Personal care assistance
- Light housekeeping
Personal Care Assistance
According to the survey conducted by HCAOA, 87% of elderly clients prefer to stay and get themselves cared for at home. Many of them require assistance in their daily tasks. Thus home health aides work to keep seniors living where they are happy and comfortable.
In other cases, they act as support for the family members to keep their aging parents safe and independent at home. Some of the tasks that come under the genre of personal care assistance are;
- Assistance in bathing, grooming, hygiene care, toileting, and dressing
- Providing a range of motion exercises (if prescribed)
- Positioning the client (to prevent pressure ulcers for bedridden clients)
- Meal planning, preparation, and feeding
- Providing medication reminders and picking up the prescriptions
- Checking vital signs such as temperature, pulse, respiratory rate, blood pressure, and pain.
Keeping a house clean and liveable is a task that is quite overwhelming for someone who is grappling with self-care issues.
You can relate to this as if you become injured or sick; then you can understand how hard it is to keep up with the daily housekeeping chores. Therefore home health aides assist the clients in reassuring them that they will perform these tasks for them on their behalf.
This is why home health aides can be a big stress reliever for clients and their families by taking over some of their day to day responsibilities so that they can relax and spend some quality time with their loved ones.
A few of their housekeeping responsibilities are mentioned below;
- Sweeping, dusting, and mopping
- Doing laundry
- Washing dishes
- Running errands
Why You Should Consider Hiring A Home Health Aide
Home health aides not only work to assist with the activities of daily living, but they also act as a companion for their clients. Many research studies have shown that social relationships play a significant role in improving physical and mental health.
Elderly clients usually feel isolated from friends and family due to many reasons, such as health conditions, financial issues, etc. In fact, researchers say that isolation is associated with a 29% increased risk of cardiovascular issues, a 30% increased risk of stroke, and a 50% increased risk of dementia.
Providing care with compassion, empathy, and reliability improves a client’s physical and psychosocial wellbeing. Hence, it enables them to manage their stress, find meaning, and purpose in their life.
Home health aides make a huge impact in their clients’ and families’ lives as they are working to help their clients through a difficult recovery, providing support, forging relationships, and providing the family with a much-needed respite. Hiring a home health aide can make a huge difference in your or a loved one’s everyday life.