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Career and Education Opportunities for Home Health Aides in Alexandria, Virginia

Alexandria, Virginia provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for home health aides. The national trend for home health aides sees this job pool growing by about 50.0% over the next eight years. Home health aides generally provide routine, personal healthcare, such as bathing, dressing, or grooming, to elderly, or disabled persons in the home of patients or in a residential care facility.

The income of a home health aide is about $9 hourly or $19,550 per year on average in Virginia. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $9 per hour or $20,460 per year on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Nursing, people working as home health aides in Virginia earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Nursing nationally. People working as home health aides can fill a number of jobs, such as: direct care counselor, home attendant, and caregiver.

There are eighty-four schools of higher education in the Alexandria area, including one within twenty-five miles of Alexandria where you can get a degree to start your career as a home health aide. Home health aides usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a home health aide if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Home Health Aide

Home Health Aide video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, home health aides provide routine, personal healthcare, such as bathing, dressing, or grooming, to elderly, or disabled persons in the home of patients or in a residential care facility.

Home health aides furnish patients with help moving in and out of beds, baths, wheelchairs or automobiles, and with dressing and grooming. They also entertain or read aloud to clients to keep them mentally healthy and alert. Equally important, home health aides have to maintain archives of patient care and discuss observations with supervisors or case managers. They are often called upon to serve meals to patients or other family members, in line with prescribed diets. Finally, home health aides change bed linens, wash and iron patients' laundry, and clean patients' quarters.

Every day, home health aides are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.

It is important for home health aides to accompany clients to doctors' offices and on other trips outside the home, providing transportation, assistance and companionship. They are often called upon to execute a variety of duties as requested by client. They also check patients' pulse, temperature and respiration. They are sometimes expected to furnish patients and families with emotional support and instruction in areas such as caring for infants, preparing healthy meals or adapting to disability or illness. Somewhat less frequently, home health aides are also expected to serve meals to patients or other family members, in line with prescribed diets.

Home health aides sometimes are asked to direct patients in simple prescribed exercises or in the use of braces or artificial limbs. They also have to be able to administer prescribed oral medications under written direction of physician or as instructed by home care nurse and aide And finally, they sometimes have to furnish patients with help moving in and out of beds, baths, wheelchairs or automobiles, and with dressing and grooming.

Like many other jobs, home health aides must be reliable and believe in an agile approach to problem solving and deal with change.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Alexandria include:

  • Certified Nursing Aide. Provide basic patient care under direction of nursing staff. Perform duties, such as feed, bathe, or move patients, or change linens.
  • Psychiatric Aide. Assist mentally impaired or emotionally disturbed patients, working under direction of nursing and medical staff.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Home Health Aide Training

Anne Arundel Community College - Arnold, MD

Anne Arundel Community College, 101 College Pky, Arnold, MD 21012-1895. Anne Arundel Community College is a large college located in Arnold, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,149 students. Anne Arundel Community College has a one to two year program in Home Health Aide/Home Attendant.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certification in Cardiac Medicine: Your pursuit of CMC® subspecialty certification reflects the dedication you exemplify as you provide direct bedside care to acutely and critically ill adult cardiac patients.

For more information, see the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses website.

Certified Home Care Aides: The Home Care Aide Certification Program establishes national standards for preparation of home care aides.

For more information, see the National Association for Home Care website.

Pharmacology: NAPNES Certification in Pharmacology allows LP/VNs to measure their knowledge against a national test and offers a national credential, post-licensure, that many employers require.

For more information, see the National Association for Practical Nurse Education and Service, Inc. website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Alexandria, Virginia

Alexandria, Virginia
Alexandria, Virginia photo by SchuminWeb

Alexandria is situated in Alexandria City County, Virginia. It has a population of over 143,885, which has grown by 12.2% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Alexandria, 124, is far greater than the national average.

The three big industries for women in Alexandria are professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and health care. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and construction. The average commute to work is about 30 minutes. More than 54.3% of Alexandria residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 24.8%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Alexandria is 4.6%, which is less than Virginia's average of 6.4%.

Church of Resurrection Episcopal, Agudas Achim Synagogue and Alexandria Bible Church are some of the churches located in Alexandria.

Alexandria is home to the Circle Terrace Hospital and the Kate Waller Barrett Branch as well as Marina Park and Founders Park. Shopping centers in the area include Hamlet Shopping Center, Landmark Shopping Center and Arlandria Shopping Center. Visitors to Alexandria can choose from Comfort Inn-Landmark, Best Western Old Colony Inn and Hilton Inn for temporary stays in the area.