Home Care Aide Week takes place from Nov. 12 to Nov. 18, 2017. During this time, we celebrate and commend all home care aides and home health aides around the world and in the CNMI, giving them thanks for their untiring care and compassion for their patients.
What are home care and home health aides?
Home care aides, or personal care aides, are those who provide assistance to individuals who do not necessarily require home healthcare but may need help with household chores and/or personal care.
Home health aides, or (HHAs, according to Merriam-Webster, are specially trained, certified healthcare workers “who provide assistance to a patient in the home.” They may be Certified Nursing Assistants. They provide personal care (hygiene and exercise) and perform light household duties (tidying and meal preparation). They are also trained to monitor their patients’ conditions. According to Professor Osterman of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management, “home health aides [are]…trained to spot patients’ health problems, to keep track of their pills and doctors’ appointments and to offer advice on healthy living.”
They are supervised by and work closely with skilled nurses and physical therapists to help deliver the best healthcare possible to their patients. HHAs take vital signs (temperature, pulse, respiration, blood pressure and oxygen saturation). They may help administer certain medications. They are also trained to do muscle strengthening exercises with their patients—and to demonstrate how to do these exercises with patient caregivers. HHAs are trained to assist their patients in hygiene and activities of daily living such as bathing, oral care, hair and nail care, just to name a few. They can also help family and/or caregivers learn safe and proper techniques of bathing their patients and changing bed linens—even for patients who are bedbound and must remain in bed during these procedures. At times, this work can be challenging, but dedicated HHAs embrace these challenges and truly live to serve.
All in all, home care and home health aides help improve their patients’ quality of life on a daily basis. If you are blessed to have a home care or home health aide in your life, and you see the positive difference they make, take a few minutes to give them a smile and thank them for all that they do. To learn more about home care and or home health aides, please visit www.marianashealth.com or call 233-4646.