Personal care assistants or much commonly known as caregivers in most English speaking countries are individuals that take care of people who are having a hard time taking care of themselves. It is a pretty demanding job, but there are so many job opportunities and money to earn in the said field. According to the Department of Employment of Australia, there are currently thousands of vacant career posts for the said profession. This is partially because of the fact that Australia is an aging country. A report made by the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed that the average age for the said country is around 37 years old and has been increasing rapidly. Here are some things you should know about being a personal care assistant before you get one of the PCA courses that are offered in the market today.
Basic job description
A personal care assistant or a care giver is tasked to take care of the general well-being of its patient. His or her job is basically almost the same with a personal nurse but is more in depth. Aside from making sure that the patient gets the right medication, nutrition and brain stimulating activities, the personal care assistant is also in charge of taking care of the emotional wellbeing of the patient. Sometimes, this even includes bathing and helping the patient defecate and urinate.
Due to the fact that dementia and other related mental disorders such as Alzheimer’s are some of the most prevalent mental conditions among elderly people (around 7/10 senior citizens exhibit dementia related symptoms), most PCA courses now incorporate care for mentally challenged individuals. Of course, if you have this in your repertoire, you get paid more.
The financial score
Australia is one of the biggest and richest economies in the world (number 12 as of 2015). Although a minimum wage earner should be able to live a decent life, personal care assistants or care givers earn way beyond the minimum wage. According to payscale.com, on an average note, personal care assistants or care givers earn 22.42 Australian dollars every hour (five dollars more than the minimum wage). This of course still depends on the client or patient. There are even instances that personal care assistants or care givers earn up to 50 to 60 dollars if the care needed is extensive. For example, if the patient has a mental disorder and is not able to do tasks anymore, care givers usually charge extra for that.
The care market is a great and growing one. It is worth 477 billion US dollars as of last year (worldwide). The economic value of the care market that takes care of patients having dementia and similar mental disorders alone is worth 217.7 billion US dollars!
Things to remember
Although the job might be able to give you a lot of money, it is a pretty demanding one. If you lack the empathy and care towards your patient then you should reconsider your choice. However, if caring for people is your passion, then don’t hesitate and enroll to PCA courses that are offered by reliable medical institutions.