What does a Care Assistant do?

Learn all about Care Assistant duties, skills and much more. Get expert advice on how to become a Care Assistant.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 3 min read

A care assistant helps people with activities of daily living and provides basic medical care. They may work in a nursing home, assisted living facility, or group home.

Care Assistant job duties include:

  • Providing personal care and assistance with activities of daily living to patients in their own homes
  • Assisting with transfers, ambulation and range of motion exercises
  • Providing skin care, mouth care, nail care and hair care
  • Assisting with toileting needs and providing perineal care
  • Providing nutrition support, including meal planning and preparation, feeding and clean up
  • Performing light housekeeping tasks, such as laundry, vacuuming, dusting and changing linens
  • Running errands for the patient, such as grocery shopping or picking up prescriptions
  • Providing companionship and emotional support
  • Monitoring vital signs and reporting changes to the supervising nurse
  • Documenting care provided

Care Assistant Job Requirements

There are no formal education requirements for a Care Assistant, although some employers may prefer candidates who have completed a health care program at a vocational school or community college. Many Care Assistants are certified through the National Healthcare Association as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA). Experience working in a long-term care facility or with the elderly is also helpful.

Care Assistant Skills

  • Patience
  • Empathy
  • Communication
  • Listening
  • Observation
  • Flexibility
  • Adaptability
  • Creativity
  • Problem solving
  • Organisation
  • Initiative

Related: Top Care Assistant Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become a Care Assistant

There are many ways to become a care assistant. One can study to become a certified nurse assistant (CNA), or a home health aide (HHA), or a personal care aide (PCA). One can also receive on-the-job training to become a care assistant.

The most important qualities for a care assistant are compassion, patience, and the ability to communicate effectively. A care assistant must be able to empathize with patients and their families, as well as be able to understand and follow instructions.

Those who wish to become a care assistant should consider taking courses that will teach them the necessary skills, such as first aid and CPR. They should also be prepared to undergo a background check and drug test, as many employers require these of their employees.

Related: Care Assistant Resume Example

Related: Care Assistant Interview Questions (With Example Answers)