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4 Tips For Looking After People

19 SEP 2013
Career Path : Healthcare

As the population in Canada ages, the demand for personal support workers is expected to continually increase over the coming years. Though working in personal support can be demanding, it is also a highly fulfilling career choice. If you have just finished Early Childhood College, or received a certificated from a Personal Support Worker Course, there is a good chance that you are a bit nervous about embarking on your new career. That is only natural, and there are some tips available to help ease your transition, maximize your effectiveness, and protect your personal safety on the job. Here are four tips for looking after people that you might find useful:

Know What You’re Getting Into

  • Unlike hospital-based health aides, personal support workers often do their job in many different environments. While this is one of the reasons that many such workers enjoy the job, it’s also a reason to be cautious when first entering a new area. Before visiting the home of a new patient, be sure to research the neighborhood and patient, become aware of any potential hazards, and find out if your patient has any pets. There is no need to be paranoid, but it is often helpful to know the situation you are getting into, just in case there is an emergency.

Set Ground Rules

  • One of the many tasks of personal support workers is to provide companionship to elderly and ill patients. Again, this is one of the aspects which many personal support workers find most fulfilling. It is important, however, to maintain professional boundaries, even as you get to know the patient and enjoy their company. Giving out your number or email address can sometimes lead to unwanted attention, so judge whether to give this information on a case-by-case basis, based partly on what you learned in Early Childhood college or a Personal Support Worker course.

Bring Your Own Hygiene Tools

  • In a hospital, all of the tools that you need to keep yourself and your patient hygienic are readily at your disposal. For the personal support worker, that is not always the case. Since you will be tending to sick people, and often helping with bathing and bodily functions, it is important to bring your own hygiene tools to each job. A few of the basics to always remember are hand sanitizer, latex gloves and paper towels.

Serve With a Smile

  • One of the greatest gifts that you can give to an ailing patient is comfort. A smile and a kind word go a long way in this regard. Try to remember that no matter what you are dealing with on a particular job, you are there to serve the patient. That’s one of the first things you’ll learn in a personal support worker course and something to take with you for the rest of your career.

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