How to Become a Home Health Aide in Texas
Employees with home health aide jobs in Texas work with patients in their homes rather than in typical settings like hospitals and nursing facilities.
To qualify for a job at a local or government-sponsored home health agency, you’ll need to meet the following education and certification standards for home health aides in TX.
Education & Training
Wondering how to become a home health aide in Texas? Start by completing the proper training course. Some agencies provide on-the-job training for new hires, teaching them the specific skills and methods they need to work for that particular company. If you hope to qualify for a broader range of home health aide jobs in Texas, you might consider enrolling in a Texas trade school program.
Home Health Aide Training in TX
Home health aides learning in school and on the job sometimes receive similar instruction on particular topics. For example, instructors and employers must teach students and trainees how to prevent and report patient abuse and neglect, as well as how to follow federal HIPPA regulations and patient privacy guidelines.
During a trade school course, you’ll receive more in-depth instruction on topics like:
- Legal and Ethical Responsibilities of Healthcare Professionals
- Infection Control
- Healthcare Safety and Sanitation Practices
- Communication Skills
- Medical Charting and Documentation Standards
- Body Mechanics
- Personal Care Services
Additional Training and Certifications
Some home health aide jobs in Texas require specialized training and additional certifications.
Depending on the type of setting you wish to work in or the kinds of patients you hope to help, you may need to obtain one of the following credentials:
- Basic Life Support: First aid, CPR, and AED certification, usually through the American Heart Association or the Red Cross
- Medication Administration: Credential from the state Board of Medicine, allowing you to legally administer oral medications, insulin, and other prescribed medications to clients
- Behavioral Health: Specialized credential for handling behavioral issues and outbursts in clients with mental health concerns and developmental disabilities
- Nurse Assisting: Qualifies you to complete certified nursing assistant (CNA) tasks, including providing wound care, performing phlebotomy duties, and monitoring vital signs
- Dementia Care: Certification that qualifies you to work with clients and patients with memory care needs
- Palliative or Hospice Care: Credential for providing end-of-life care for elderly clients and patients with terminal illnesses
- Physical Therapy: Allows you to assist patients with physical therapy exercises and treatments as part of their overall wellness or recovery care plan
How Long is Home Health Aide Training?
Training duration varies across different employers and trade schools. On-the-job training can take anywhere from two weeks to six months, depending on the type of probationary period your employer has in place.
Classroom and Hands-On Training
Meanwhile, school programs usually follow the Texas Department of Health and Human Services guidelines of providing at least 75 hours of training, which includes at least 16 hours of classroom instruction. You may be able to complete this in one to eight weeks at some schools.
How Much Does Home Health Aide School Cost?
Tuition costs for becoming a home health aide in Texas usually range from about $200 for shorter, one-week courses to $800 for longer programs. At some schools, tuition rates are between $1,000 and $2,000. Usually, these more expensive programs include specialized instruction and require students to pass various certification exams.
Texas Home Health Aide Requirements
Minimum requirements for getting a job as a home health aide in TX are usually as follows:
- Have a high school diploma, GED, or equivalent
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Pass a criminal background check and drug screening
- Test negative for tuberculosis and submit proof of updated immunization records
Again, you might need to meet additional requirements if you want to work with a particular type of clientele or become a Texas CNA before starting your home health aide career.
Home Health Aide Certification
Hopefuls who wish to qualify for private duty home health aide jobs in Texas can obtain an official Home Health Aide (HHA) certification through agencies like:
To earn your HHA certification, you must complete an agency-sponsored training program and pass a competency test to prove your patient care expertise. You might also learn some basic insurance requirements and business and marketing practices that can help private duty home health aides in Texas appeal to potential clients.
Home Health Aide Salaries in TX
The average home health aide salary in Texas is about $22,625 per year. Keep in mind, however, that this is the typical salary for entry-level, inexperienced employees working for local home health agencies. Depending on where they live, entry-level hopefuls might make more or less than the statewide average. For example:
- Houston $23,377
- El Paso $19,594
- Austin $24,570
- Dallas $24,334
- Corpus Christi $21,948
- Amarillo $22,595
- San Antonio $22,110
Applicants with more experience or who possess additional certifications can earn higher wages than those who lack any formal training or credentials. You might be able to make a salary closer to $40,000 or even $60,000 per year if your skillset qualifies you for more advanced home health aide jobs in Texas.
What Do They Do?
Since home health aide jobs in Texas involve working in a client or patient’s home, employees must perform patient care tasks and housekeeping duties as part of their typical workday. Everyday responsibilities for these professionals typically include:
- Helping clients bathe, dress, groom, and feed themselves
- Reminding clients to take their medicines OR administering medications yourself if you have the proper certification
- Lifting, turning, and transporting clients to and from beds and seats as needed
- Providing companionship throughout the shift
- Taking clients on scheduled outings, including driving them to church, doctor’s appointments, and salon or barbershop visits
- Performing routine cleaning tasks, such as vacuuming, washing dishes, sweeping and mopping floors, and doing laundry
- Preparing nutritionist-approved meals and snacks
- Completing documentation of all the activities the client does throughout the day
Becoming a home health aide is a smart choice if you’re looking for a fast-growing, in-demand job. As more professionals in this field transition to CNA and LPN jobs, the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects more home health aide positions to become available. Reports predict that the need for home health aide jobs in the United States will increase by about 25 percent over the next ten years.