A personal caretaker is hired to provide personal care to individuals who are unwell, or too old to get about on their own. The work includes providing personal care assistance including grooming, feeding and bathroom functions. In addition to this, it is the responsibility of a personal caretaker to assist with medication administration and perform light housework.
Usually, a high school diploma or GED is considered sufficient to work as a personal caretaker. However, training in administering First Aid and CPR is also required if you want to work as a personal caretaker. Exceptional interpersonal skills, solid patience, great attention to detail, and excellent physical stamina is important to possess if you want to work as a personal caretaker.
In addition to this, it is important for personal caretakers to understand bad moods and mental conditions as they may be assigned to an individual who has dementia setting in, or has had brain damage. Being compassionate comes with the territory – a person who is not patient and empathetic can probably not do justice to this work. So if you have it in you to want to help people who cannot help themselves, and if you also possess the patience and good sense to work as a personal caretaker, the following list of job duties will be of interest to you:
• Assess assigned individuals with care to determine their specific requirements and personalities
• Go through doctors’ orders to determine what each individual requires in terms of medical attention
• Create meal plans according to each assigned individual’s specific likes and dislikes, and their nutritional plans, approved by the doctor
• Plan and prepare meals according to nutritional plans and assist patients in partaking them
• Administer medication by mouth, in accordance with set medication schedules
• Assist physical therapists in implementing exercises by providing support and encouragement to individuals / patients
• Accompany patients to doctors’ appointments or at social gatherings, while ensuring their physical and emotional comfort
• Provide limited counseling services to patients in a bid to keep them away from depressive states
• Perform light housekeeping activities such as dusting and vacuuming and ensure that patients’ surroundings are kept free from hazardous objects
• Monitor patients constantly and act quickly during emergencies, by administering CPR or First Aid
• Run errands such as grocery shopping and paying bills, and handling minor repairs around the house
• Take and record patients’ vitals such as temperature, pulse and blood pressure, and ensure that appropriate records are maintained