Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Who is the 40-hour Personal Care Attendant Training Program designed for?
A. The 40-hour Personal Care Attendant Training Program is designed for anyone who plans to provide or is now providing care and assistance for the elderly, sick or disabled. These care providers may have various titles including: home health or home care aide, personal care attendant, direct care provider or in-home support worker.
Q. Why was the Personal Care Attendant Training Program developed?
A. To provide standardized education in essential care skills as well as important communication and professional skills for in-home support workers. With the huge aging boom, with more and more people going home “quicker and sicker” because of early hospital discharge and with more people choosing to age in place rather than entering nursing homes, the need for in-home support providers has increased dramatically. In fact the category of personal and home care aides is one of the top 10 fastest-growing occupational niches, according to Dept. of Labor statistics. The demand for trained in-home caregivers will nearly double by 2020.Up until now, in-home care providers have not been included as part of health care education, where CNA, LPN and RN are the main levels trained. This approach may be preventing recent immigrants, dislocated workers, public assistance recipients and other much-needed workers from entering the home care field. With the 40-hour Personal Care Attendant Training Program, in-home support workers benefit from an excellent standardized education in essential caregiving skills, communication and behavioral skills, which enable them to provide care with skill and confidence.
Q. What does the 40-hour Personal Care Attendant Training Program consist of?
A. The program includes a comprehensive, step-by-step curriculum that is included in the Instructor and Administrator manuals, along with a Support Material manual that contains all of the handouts and tests. Three textbooks and 13 DVDs/videos are also included. The program incorporates the key principles of adult learning theory to optimize retention of course materials.
For the Administrator:
The Administrator Manual provides everything needed to become familiar with the training, hire an instructor and publicize the program. A course content outline, instructor job description, tips on hiring an instructor, publicity tips, publicity flyer and public service announcement are included. The manual details space and equipment needs and provides lists of resources and tips on working with other organizations to obtain them.
For the Instructor:
The instructor receives a manual that provides the curriculum, instructions on how to use the textbooks, tips for space and equipment preparation, a class summary, a guide for key points and definitions, tests, answer keys, course/teacher evaluation forms and 21 certificates of completion. It also provides tips for using classroom time effectively, giving effective demonstrations, teaching adult learners, guiding hands-on learning as well as testing and a skills competency checklist. The instructor support materials also include the Quick Tips for Caregivers textbook and workbook, Guide to Working as a Personal Care Attendant booklet and the award-winning DVDs/videos on 13 essential care topics.
For the Students:
The program is designed for up to 20 students. Each will receive copies of the dynamic, information-packed Quick Tips for Caregivers textbook, the Quick Tips for Caregivers Workbook, and the Guide to Working as a Personal Care Attendant booklet. Students will receive 40 hours of classroom instruction in the form of lecture, live demonstrations, hands-on practice, DVD/video instruction and discussion. The information is presented in an easy to understand style with an opportunity for review. Students who complete the course successfully receive a certificate of completion identifying them as trained and confident care providers.
Q. What topics of instruction are covered?
A. Caring for the elderly and disabled
- Roles and responsibilities of a personal care attendant
- Moving and positioning someone in bed
- Preventing and treating pressure ulcers
- Proper body mechanics for the caregiver and care recipient
- Infection control and bloodborne pathogens
- Personal care (grooming, hygiene, etc)
- Tub baths and showers
- Vital signs
- Intake and output
- Oxygen therapy
- Medication management
- Safe wheelchair use
- Reducing personal stress
- Fall prevention
- Fire safety
- Elder abuse and neglect
- Cultural competency
- Specific diseases, including: early to mid and mid to late stage Alzheimer’s disease, arthritis, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke and aphasia, depression, Parkinson’s, ALS, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury
Q. Where were the videos/DVDs made?
A. Scenes in the DVDs/videos were filmed in home and institutional environments at various geographic locations throughout the western United States.
Q. In what settings can the skills obtained through this program be applied?
A. The skills obtained can be used in individual’s homes, assisted living facilities, adult day care centers, private-duty agencies and by consumer directed clients.
- Will I receive a Certificate of Completion? If you choose to take the test offered at the end of the course, and you pass it, you will receive a Certificate of Completion for your records. The certificate will reflect the applicable Continuing Education Credit (CEU) earned.
- The video did not help me with a specific concern I have on this topic. What can I do? All students receive a Personal Question & Answer (PQA) session with one of our Certified Geriatric Care Managers and Qualified Dementia Care Specialists. This assures that any specific care questions you have relating to your own individual caregiving challenges are addressed and answered. Just call us when you have completed the course to schedule a PQA Session should you have any questions that we can help you with.
Q. What is the difference between the National Caregiver Training Program and the Personal Care Attendant Training Program?
A. The Personal Care Attendant Training Program is a 40-hour training designed to educate groups of up to 20 people who want to work as paid care providers in home or institutional settings. Topics of instruction are provided above. There is approximately 15 hours of additional homework for the student during the course of the program. Organizations may choose to add up to 35 hours of externship or practicum to the course.The National Caregiver Training Program is a 21-hour course designed to educate groups of up to 10 family caregivers or volunteers. It focuses on essential caregiving skills in the home setting.
Q. Who teaches the curriculum?
A. An RN or LPN/LVN can teach the program. The Instructor Manual guides the instructor step by step. It also includes tips and techniques for classroom management such as teaching adult learners, creating a supportive classroom environment, the importance of cultural competence, the art of giving excellent demonstrations, using classroom time effectively and helping students with hands-on learning.
Q. How many students can be taught?
A. The program is designed for up to 20 participants at one time. The program can be repeated again and again. Additional textbooks can be purchased at a discounted price.
Q. How long is the program?
A. Program content is 40 hours of classroom time that is taught in 3-hour learning modules. There are approximately 15 hours of homework during the course of the program. Organizations may choose to add up to 35 hours of externship or practicum to the course.
Q. What are the space and equipment needs?
A. The training requires a room that is 375–550 square feet. Ideally, the room will contain a sink with running water. Necessary equipment includes two hospital beds, two wheelchairs and blood pressure equipment. These and other items such as thermometers, bed linens and bath basin can be obtained on loan or by donation from agencies such as the American Cancer Society, Red Cross or your local hospital.
Q. Are there pre-requisites?
A. Participants must have an understanding of the English language and a fifth grade reading level.
Q. What requirements are needed to successfully complete the program?
A. The participant must complete all workbook assignments and have a passing score of 75% correct answers for the mid-term and final tests in order to receive the Personal Care Certificate of Completion.
Q. What does the PCA Program Cost?
A. The program can be purchased for $4,995.00 It is a one-time purchase cost with no licensing or renewal fees. This does not include shipping and handling charges.
Q. Who has purchased the PCA Training Program?
A. Technical colleges, community colleges, social service agencies, home care agencies and corporations that own group adult foster homes are currently utilizing the program.
Q.Will I receive a Certificate of Completion?
A.If you choose to take the test offered at the end of the course, and you pass it, you will receive a Certificate of Completion for your records. The certificate will reflect the applicable Continuing Education Credit (CEU) earned
Q. The video did not help me with a specific concern I have on this topic. What can I do?
A. All students receive a Personal Question & Answer (PQA) session with one of our Certified Geriatric Care Managers and Qualified Dementia Care Specialists. This assures that any specific care questions you have relating to your own individual caregiving challenges are addressed and answered. Just call us when you have completed the course to schedule a PQA Session should you have any questions that we can help you with.