Residential Aide: Salary, Job Duties and Career Overview
Residential aides are typically employed by a nursing home; however, some work with private clients. A residential aide assists patients with tasks they are no longer able to perform such as doing laundry, assisting their clients with dressing, and cooking for them. Residential aides also provide emotional support to their clients.
Programs for aspiring residential aides are typically offered at community colleges or by employers themselves. These programs usually end in a certificate or an associate's degree. The skills taught in these programs include housekeeping techniques, sanitary procedures, safety procedures, and cooking skills.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in May 2012, home health aides earned a mean hourly wage of $10.49. This amounted to a mean annual wage of $21,830. Personal and home care aides earned a mean yearly salary of $20,830 and made an average of $10.01 a hour for mean hourly wages (www.bls.gov).
A residential aide can be employed by a nursing home or other facility, or they can work at a client's home. The position can include room and board or the residential aide can commute depending on the circumstances of the job. Basically, the everyday care of a patient who is ill, impaired, or otherwise disabled is taken care of by the residential aide.
Housekeeping tasks like changing the bed, doing laundry, and cooking meals are performed by residential aides. Additionally, they perform more hands-on tasks with patients depending on their needs. A residential aide may have to groom, dress, bathe, and assist a patient in getting around the house or hospital. Also, a residential aide helps provide emotional support by spending time with the patient and speaking to them.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, residential aides may need certification with the state they work in(www.bls.gov). The requirements for this generally include a minimum of 16 hours of supervised work experience and 75 hours of education followed by an examination testing the residential aide's skill competency. In order to re-certify, continuing education is usually required every few years.
Additionally, voluntary certification is available from organizations like the National Association for Home Care and Hospice (www.nahc.org). The certifications offered by this association require documentation and proof of training along with an assessment of skills. Additionally, a written examination must be completed and passed to acquire the certification.
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