the heart of retirement homes

The daily life of the caregiver
Word for word, the title suggests that the job is only to help the caregiver(s). Moreover, it happens that it is above all the patient who is helped, as well as his family, in an indirect way.

Since the appearance of the coronavirus, the increased need for medical personnel has opened the doors to many trades which are recruiting in abundance. It will be easy for you to find nursing assistant jobs in your area.

Also, and in the imaginary expectation that the lexicographers change the title of the profession of nurse’s aide to patient’s aide, let’s take a closer look at the responsibilities incumbent on this function.

The decree of June 10, 2021 clearly defines the 5 fields of action of the profession:
1. Accompany and treat the person in the activities of daily life and their social life by identifying weaknesses (measure vital parameters, help to get up, eat, etc.)

2. Assess the clinical state of the person and implement appropriate care in collaboration with the nurse by integrating quality and risk prevention (noting the presence of bedsores for example and treating accordingly, in close collaboration with the medical team…)

3. Inform and support people and their entourage, professionals and learners (warn the family of an unusual feature, etc.)

4. Maintain the immediate environment of the person and the materials related to the care activities, the place and the intervention situations (change the sheets, etc.)

5. Transmit the observations collected to maintain the continuity of care and activities (notify the night team of the observations or the implementation of a new treatment, etc.)
The actual work remains of course the full responsibility of the nurse in charge.

Qualifications required to be a caregiver
It is important to know the fundamentals of this profession since they will form the backbone of your activity. Nevertheless, his day-to-day exercise will mainly consist of accompanying the resident.

This represents a help, a benchmark, both for the senior and for his family. On a more psychological level, your key role will be to guarantee and maintain the well-being of seniors. Knowing their habits, tastes and preferences are the essential skills that will make you a good, if not an excellent caregiver.

So-and-so prefers a rather rigid cushion, so-and-so always likes to sit on the same bench in the garden… so many details that make a real difference in the lives of these elderly people. They who, let us remember, are often far from their loved ones and their family. They need support and empathy in an atmosphere of trust and security.

It is probably to you that the residents will confide in you to share their fear, their apprehension or their family stories. Especially during favorable moments, such as walking.

This job therefore requires excellent interpersonal skills, compassion and marked dedication. Emotionally, the professional must find the right balance to deal with the daily life of residents of retirement homes.

Working with the elderly or at the end of life requires good nervous stamina, a lot of patience and gentleness. The work of a nurse’s aide is also very manual, since you will very often be in contact with the patient’s body.

It is therefore necessary, not only to demonstrate tact and modesty, but also great physical resistance. Lifting, positioning or adjusting the posture of seniors will be daily missions.

Nursing assistant career
The degree course
After a first selection on file and interview, you will be able to join an IFAS (Nursing Assistant Training Institute). The 40 weeks or so of theoretical and practical training deliver the State nursing assistant diploma (DEAS).

Other paths open the doors of the profession to you:
– Validation of acquired experience (VAE). It is obtained after having practiced at least two of the five fields of action described above for a total of 1607 hours.
– Train in the theoretical part thanks to your personal training account (CPF).

Nursing assistant salary and job offers
The gross monthly salary, at the start of the career, starts around 1,760 euros. With rising prices and inflation, the pay may seem low for an activity that requires a lot of mental and physical strength.

Moreover, the dedication specific to the healthcare teams, as evidenced by the coronavirus pandemic, would not have completely obtained all the deserved recognition. This could explain the loss of interest in this profession which suffers from a shortage of nursing assistants.

At the same time, however, the imminent aging of the French population provides for a crying need for nursing assistants whose role is crucial, both in nursing homes and in hospitals.


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