The steps you'll have to take to become a home care provider may depend on the jurisdiction in which you are located as well as the type of home care job you seek. Often, home care agencies hire nursing aides, so you may seek certification in this field. A home care agency may also have a need for registered nurses. If you would like such a position, you will likely have to complete a nurse training program and pass a licensing exam to become a registered nurse. In addition to appropriate training, you may also have to submit to a background check to become a home care provider.
There are a few different paths you can take to become a home care provider. For example, you may choose to become a caregiver or companion in a position that does not require any licensing or certification. In such a case, you may need experience with such things as meal preparation and housekeeping as well as general first-aid training to qualify for this job. In many cases, employers are willing to offer training for aspiring home care providers. You may, for example, receive on-the-job training under the supervision of an experienced provider.
Though you may not need a license or certification for some home care positions, you may choose to earn certification on a voluntary basis. For example, your jurisdiction may have an organization that provides a voluntary certification program. This usually involves classroom work, demonstration of the skills you will need for home care, and passing an exam. Having voluntary certification may give you a competitive edge when it comes to applying for home care jobs.
Some home care jobs are for certified nursing aides. To fill this type of position, you will likely have to complete a nursing aide training program. In many places, these programs involve 75 hours of classroom study and clinical learning. You will also have to pass an exam to secure certification.
You may also find some home care provider jobs that are intended for registered nurses. To fill one of these positions, you will usually have to complete a nurse education program, which may last for two to four years. Programs can be found at independent nursing schools, community colleges and universities. After training, you will typically have to pass an exam to be licensed to practice as a registered nurse.
Once you become a home care provider, you will typically work closely with clients, usually without direct supervision. For this reason, most agencies will consider your background important. You may also have to submit to a criminal background check to become a home care provider.