Spurred on by factors that include an aging U.S. population and patient preferences, home healthcare jobs in Fort Wayne are plentiful. Using home health aides as an example, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment growth exceeding 25% within the next eight years. If you’ve always wanted to work in home health care but weren’t sure what it entails, this handy guide should provide the answers you need.
What is Home Health Care?
As opposed to a setting like a hospital or nursing home, home health care refers to skilled nursing care, personal care, or therapeutic services provided in a patient’s private residence. A job in home health care means working with all types of patients in their homes under the supervision of their physicians.
Typically delivered by licensed medical professionals, home healthcare workers assist patients with various tasks, including wound care, tracking and administering medication, therapy services, mental health services, nutrition, and monitoring overall health. Home health care empowers patients and families by providing medical care in the comfortable surroundings of one’s home.
How Can I Work in Home Health Care?
Using nursing as an example, working in the home healthcare field as a nurse requires the same certification, licensure, and training as a registered nurse (RN). Licensure requirements vary by state, with some states requiring additional training once you’ve obtained an associate’s or a bachelor’s degree.
Experienced nurses who work in home health care are typically hired through an agency, whereas those with less clinical experience often start with private companies that offer additional training.
Is Home Health Care Right for Me?
While most healthcare professionals prefer working in a home environment versus a hospital or other medical facility, this career isn’t for everyone. And although the average healthcare worker wants to make a difference in their patients’ lives, home healthcare allows you to build personal relationships with patients and families you might not otherwise be able to enjoy.
Working in a hospital often also means long, stressful, and demanding hours, including overtime due to staff shortages. On the other hand, most home healthcare jobs offer flexible scheduling, creating a healthier work-life balance for those wishing to further their education or raise a family.
And finally, no two days are alike when working in the home healthcare field. Each day presents unique challenges and, more importantly, new opportunities to learn and grow professionally.
Types of Home Healthcare Jobs in Fort Wayne
There are many pathways for healthcare professionals to pursue an exciting home healthcare career. Which one is right for you? To help you decide, these are some of the more common home healthcare jobs out there:
While working directly with patients, registered nurses (RNs) perform various duties in the home, including monitoring their vital signs, wound dressing changes, dispensing or administering prescribed medications, and educating the patient and family about upcoming procedures or home care tasks.
Depending on where you live, becoming an RN may require a two-year or four-year degree, certification, and state licensure. Obtaining an advanced degree or completing specialized training (geriatrics, oncology, etc.) may open the door to additional home healthcare career opportunities.
Home Health Aide
Under the supervision of a registered nurse (RN) or other licensed health-care professional, home health aides support patients in various ways, from personal care assistance and companionship to meal preparation, transferring, and light housekeeping.
A home health aide (HHA) might also accompany a patient to their medical appointments or educate them on proper nutrition. They may also be asked to keep detailed records of home visits, including what services were performed and by whom.
To learn more about becoming a home health aide, click here now.
Physical therapists (PTs) help patients improve their mobility and range of motion, manage pain, and improve their quality of life. A physical therapist may review the patient’s medical history, observe their movements, and develop a treatment plan that involves specialized equipment, stretches, and exercises.
PTs employed in home health care often assist patients recovering from a stroke, surgery, or injury, or those living with chronic conditions like arthritis or multiple sclerosis (MS). To be licensed, a physical therapist must earn a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree.
Also known as speech therapists, speech pathologists work with patients who have communication disorders or difficulty with swallowing. A speech pathologist may begin working with a new patient by observing and evaluating their speech or swallowing challenges.
Once they’ve determined what’s causing the issue, a speech pathologist may create and implement an appropriate treatment plan. Many speech pathologists in home health care routinely work with patients facing challenges due to developmental delay, cleft palate, autism, or a recent stroke.
Occupational therapists (OTs) help patients acquire or regain physical functions while recovering at home from an illness, a disability, or an injury. OT home health services range from helping a stroke victim relearn how to bathe or get dressed to advising an employer about how to accommodate the patient’s physical workplace needs best. An occupational therapist can profoundly impact a patient’s quality of life while assisting them in their home.
Nutritionists employed in home health care often work directly with patients to assess their nutritional needs and create customized meal plans. Based on any food restrictions or eating issues the patient has, a nutritionist may advise them to lose or gain weight or eat healthier by following a specific dietary regimen.
Medical Social Worker
Medical social workers provide various services to home healthcare patients, including mental health counseling and locating community resources to help ensure a successful recovery. When the patient’s medical condition is more complex or requires the coordination of many services, a medical social worker may also serve as the patient’s case manager.
In addition to assisting clients with issues caused by neglect, abuse, domestic violence, and substance abuse, clinical social workers may also diagnose and treat mental, behavioral, and emotional issues.
Is Home Health Care Your Calling? Let’s Have a Conversation.
If you are passionate about making a difference in the lives of others, Senior1Care in Fort Wayne invites you to join our winning home care team. Due to our expanding patient load, we are currently seeking qualified home health aides to fill several exciting positions. While proudly serving Fort Wayne, South Bend, Indianapolis, and Elkhart, we support patients and their families with top-quality home care services like Personal Care, Light housekeeping, Companionship Care, Medication reminders, and even Recovery Care and more.
As a highly valued member of the Senior1care team, you’ll enjoy a fast-paced, positive work environment where your input is valued and hard work is rewarded. We also offer competitive pay, flexible scheduling, ongoing staff training, and career advancement opportunities galore. No matter your experience level or education, we’d love to hear from you! To learn more about our home healthcare jobs, please visit us today at www.Senior1Care.com.