Personal Care Aides

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About the Job

Assist the elderly, convalescents, or persons with disabilities with daily living activities at the person's home or in a care facility. Duties performed at a place of residence may include keeping house (making beds, doing laundry, washing dishes) and preparing meals. May provide assistance at non-residential care facilities. May advise families, the elderly, convalescents, and persons with disabilities regarding such things as nutrition, cleanliness, and household activities.

It is also Called

  • Support Staff
  • State Tested Nursing Assistant (STNA)
  • Sitter
  • Resident Care Assistant (RCA)
  • Resident Assistant
  • Provider
  • Personal Support Worker
  • Personal Care Attendant (PCA)
  • Personal Care Assistant (PCA)
  • Personal Care Aide
show all

What They Do

  • Train family members to provide bedside care.
  • Provide clients with communication assistance, typing their correspondence or obtaining information for them.
  • Transport clients to locations outside the home, such as to physicians' offices or on outings, using a motor vehicle.
  • Plan, shop for, or prepare nutritious meals or assist families in planning, shopping for, or preparing nutritious meals.
  • Instruct or advise clients on issues such as household cleanliness, utilities, hygiene, nutrition, or infant care.
  • Perform housekeeping duties, such as cooking, cleaning, washing clothes or dishes, or running errands.
  • Care for individuals or families during periods of incapacitation, family disruption, or convalescence, providing companionship, personal care, or help in adjusting to new lifestyles.
  • Participate in case reviews, consulting with the team caring for the client, to evaluate the client's needs and plan for continuing services.
  • Perform healthcare-related tasks, such as monitoring vital signs and medication, under the direction of registered nurses or physiotherapists.
  • Prepare and maintain records of client progress and services performed, reporting changes in client condition to manager or supervisor.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: EI.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Enterprising interests, but also prefer Investigative environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Relationships, but also value Achievement and Support in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Transportation - Knowledge of principles and methods for moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road, including the relative costs and benefits.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Instructing - Teaching others how to do something.

Education Required

These occupations usually require a high school diploma.

Wages

In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $22,810 with most people making between $17,650 and $29,090

Outlook

2.11%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 62,170 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 75,310 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 1,314 openings due to growth and about 506 replacement openings for approximately 1,820 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education