July 4th, 2018 | BY: Allegra Chaney

Training for Caregivers of the Elderly

Dear Allegra,

After many years of being a stay-at-home mom, I’m ready to find a job outside our home again. I’ve decided to pursue a career in professional caregiving. I like the idea of working for a home care agency and delivering care to people right in their home.

While I’ve been busy caring for my own children for many years, I don’t have any professional caregiving experience. Where can I go to get caregiver training?

Warmly,

Julie

Where Can I Get Caregiver Training?

Dear Julie,

Congratulations on raising your family and on making the decision to tackle a new challenge! Caregiving is a noble profession and one you’ll likely find very rewarding.

What’s nice about becoming a home care aide is that you will have a chance to learn and grow every day. Your expanded knowledge will come from hands-on experience working with clients and participating in continuing education classes.

Some home care agencies offer continuing education opportunities for employees on a variety of targeted topics. For example, dementia caregiver training will help you learn more ways to care for adults with Alzheimer’s and similar forms of dementia.

Because in-home care aides are non-medical caregivers, your core training will focus on helping adults with what are referred to as “activities of daily living” (ADLs).

ADLs include:

  • Hygiene assistance (bathing, grooming, dressing)
  • Medication reminders
  • Meal planning and preparation
  • Laundry and light housekeeping

As far as where you can find a caregiver training program, we have a few ideas for you to explore:

  • Institute for Professional Care Education: This company is often used by employers in the home care industry. You can begin by earning the Caregiver Core Certification before moving on to more specific caregiver training for dementia, diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, mental health, hospice, and more. These online courses make it easy to learn at your own pace during times that are convenient for you.
  • Caregiver Training University: Another online option to consider is the Caregiver Training University sponsored by Caregiverlist. Their classes are designed to help students master core caregiving skills while also meeting individual state requirements.
  • American Caregiver Association (ACA): ACA, a volunteer organization, offers a self-study program that students can complete online at their own pace. ACA is also responsible for the oversight of the Official National Caregiver Registry. Employers use the registry to check the certifications for any professional caregivers they are considering for employment.

If you prefer a classroom setting instead of online learning, see what caregiver training programs are offered at your local community college. Most have classes and certifications designed to meet their state’s unique professional caregiver requirements.

My final suggestion is to bookmark this blog and stop back often. I share new information and tools for professional caregivers throughout the month.

Good luck, Julie!

Kind regards,

Allegra