You can earn your Home Health Aide certification in just a matter of weeks, and become eligible to work as a home care specialist in one of the nation’s fastest-growing healthcare professions!
With your certification in hand, you’ll not only become more likely to secure employment with employers in your area, but may also receive a higher starting wage as well. Read on to learn more about why becoming a Certified Home Health Aide (CHHA) may be right for you!
The Importance of Home Health Aide Certification
Being certified is not a current requirement for employment as a home care provider in every state, but there is a nationwide trend toward making it mandatory. This is primarily being driven by the fact that two of the largest insurers of home care patients – Medicaid and Medicare – both require the agencies providing care to employ only certified personnel.
In other words, you may be able to find a job today as an uncertified HHA, but you may not be able to in the near future.
The Three Steps to Becoming a CHHA
The process of becoming certified can be broken down into three basic steps:
- Graduate from an accredited training course
- Pass the HHA certification exam administered in your state
- Keep your certificate current through the required renewal process
A closer look at each step follows.
Graduate from an Accredited Class
Home Health Aide classes should be accredited by the ACHC in order to guarantee that they meet your state’s requirement to become eligible for certification testing. Accredited courses usually include a minimum of at least 75 hours of classroom instruction and 16 hours of clinical training.
Pass the HHA Certification Exam
Each state administers its own test for Home Health Aide certification, but most are similar in a number of ways. You can expect to take a multiple-choice exam that covers patient nutrition, bathing and basic care procedures, communication and dealing with medical emergencies.
Check out this link to review the practice exam currently administered by the State of Oregon.
Receive and Maintain Your Certification Status
Once you’ve passed the exam for your state, you’ll receive your certification in the mail and become added to the state registry. This is not a one-time certificate, however.
Home Health Aides must apply for renewal of their certification every two years, so it’s important to stay current on changes in your industry. You may additionally be required to attend some sort of training in order to stay certified.