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What Does a Personal Support Worker Do?

If you enjoy warming people’s lives and being compassionate, you should consider becoming a personal support worker. Being a personal support worker is not just a job like any other; it involves emotions, making genuine connections with other people, and seamlessly being a part of their lives. To qualify or work as a personal support assistant, you must undergo medication administration training on short online courses, such as OHS courses. This way, you can provide high-quality care while ensuring the safety and well-being of your clients.

What Do Personal Support Workers Do?

Personal support workers are identified by many job titles. They can be live-in caregivers, respite workers, family caregivers, long-term care aides, personal care attendants, or home support workers. This means their roles can cut across many things but the main responsibility is providing personalized care that ensures their clients are comfortable and taken care of. Here are some of the common responsibilities.

Assistance with Day-to-Day Activities - PSWs play a vital role in the healthcare system by providing essential care and support to individuals who require assistance with daily living activities. This includes toileting, oral hygiene, lifts, transfer, and feeding. 

Medication Assistance - PSWs may assist clients with medication management, including reminding them to take medications as prescribed. They help people with medication administration and keep track of medication schedules.

Preparing Food and Feeding Them - This is another everyday task that may sound straightforward but is actually a bit complex. The caregivers have to ensure they know their clients' favorite foods and dietary restrictions. 

Mobility Assistance - PSWs help clients with mobility issues to move around safely. This can include transferring from bed to chair, using mobility aids like walkers or wheelchairs, or providing assistance during walks or exercises.

Monitoring and Reporting - Lastly, they observe clients for any changes in health or behavior and report any concerns to appropriate healthcare professionals or family members. This includes monitoring vital signs, tracking symptoms, and documenting observations.

But of course, these are not the only duties on their list. They may also have to perform other tasks as needed including light house duties like laundry, doing the dishes, sweeping, and mopping. 

Skills and Qualifications Needed

To get a job as a personal support worker, you need to check several boxes. We have compiled a list of the most common ones. However, you should remember that they will vary depending on the job you have been assigned. You should:

  • Have great interpersonal skills, especially when it comes to listening.
  • Be aware of computer programs that will allow you to record and document information well.
  • Have good organizational skills and be able to keep up high standards even when you are under pressure.
  • Be flexible and adapt to change.
  • Be accustomed and knowledgeable to understanding the various needs of the different patients you have.
  • Possess written and oral communication skills.
  • Be able to perform both as an independent collaborator and work with teams.
  • Be able to comply with the procedures and standard policies that ensure you have a safe working environment.

Is It Worth Pursuing?

When picking out what you want to do, go with what speaks to your heart; for different people, this can mean different things. As a personal support worker, you have a great employment future as the job comes with a variety of benefits. One that we have to mention is job security, as retirees keep on coming. With the ever-growing aging population, there is a need for personal support workers. 

Most families find it difficult to provide personalized care for their families full-time because of work. Therefore, it’s no secret that now more than ever, there is an urgent need for personal support workers. If you are passionate and capable, this makes it an excellent career to consider.

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