Since medicare payments are involved in home health care, there are both federal and state specific guidelines one must meet to become a HHA.
Federally, it’s mandated that all certified home health aides have training which consist of 75 hours of training, including at least 16 hours of supervised practical clinical training, and pass a standardized test.
The exact training protocol will vary from facility to facility, however, the basics one has to learn to become a home health aide are:
- Personal hygiene
- Reading and recording vital signs
- Infection control
- Basic nutrition
State Specific Training Requirements
Beyond the Federal regulations discussed above, there are requirements to be a HHA in the state of Texas you must meet.
In the state of Texas, to become a certified home care aide you must meet one of the following six criteria, according to the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services.
- At least of one year full-time experience in direct client care in an institutional setting (hospital or nursing facility);
- One year full-time experience within the last five years in direct client care in an agency setting;
- Satisfactorily completed a training and competency evaluation program approved by the State of Texas
- Satisfactorily completed a competency evaluation program approved by the State of Texas
- Submitted to the agency documentation from the director of programs or the dean of a school of nursing that states that the individual is a nursing student who has demonstrated competency in providing basic nursing skills under the school’s curriculum; or
- Be on the Texas Department of Human Services’ (DHS’s) nurse aide registry with no finding against the aide relating to client abuse or neglect or misappropriation of client property
The most common method of becoming a Home Health Aide is # 3, completing a state approved training and competency program.
Texas has established that the federal minimum requirements, which are; 75 hours of total training, with a minimum of 16 hours of clinical training, a the successful completion of a test.
(Note: Other states such as California require hours over and above the minimum.)
Where To Get Free HHA Training In Texas
The demand for home health aides is at an all time high. More importantly, it’s expected to grow. This means employers, often referred to as home health agencies, are in dire need of certified home health aides.
Therefore, many agencies throughout the state offer free home health aide training to prospective employees.
Beyond being certified at a home health agency, there are other options as well, such as community colleges and vocational schools.
What you want to look for in a home health aide training program is one that is approved by the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services.
Also, check with prospective employers regarding the type of education requirements they look for, such as a high school diploma or its equal. There is no federal law pertaining to educational requirements, however, employers may choose to hire only high school graduates.