Care Assistant Job Description

Also known as care worker, social care worker, healthcare assistant
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What is a Care Assistant?

A care assistant offers support to people in all aspects of their day to day life, from social and physical activities to personal care and meal times.

Care assistants work in a variety of locations, including private homes and assisted living facilities. They typically give support to adults with learning difficulties, physical disabilities, mental health conditions, long-term illnesses and the elderly. 

It is a very hands-on job on the frontline of care, and can be demanding at times. However every day is different, and many find it extremely rewarding and fulfilling work.

Care work is often done in shifts, however there are also full-time and live in care assistants. Shifts can be long and demanding, so a good care assistant has plenty of physical and emotional stamina.

What is a Care Assistant?

Responsibilities

Skills

Qualifications and Education

Salary

Responsibilities

 

A care assistant’s main responsibility is to help clients with their immediate needs, such as:

  • Personal care
  • Dressing
  • Hygiene
  • Attending their appointments
  • Social and physical activities
  • Shopping and cooking
  • Exercise
  • Medication
  • Mobilisation
  • Palliative care for the terminally ill
  • Emotional support and wellbeing
  • Administrative tasks such as paying bills
  • Safeguarding

Skills

To be a successful care assistant, you need:

  • Excellent people skills, including the ability to relate well with people from any background
  • Excellent listening and communication skills
  • Teamwork
  • Basic knowledge of healthcare
  • Problem-solving
  • Writing and planning skills for care plans
  • Knowledge of procedure and the ability to follow it
  • Emotional and physical stamina

Beyond this, some desirable (but not essential) skills are:

  • A good sense of humour
  • Detailed medical knowledge

Qualifications and Education 

There are no required qualifications to become a care assistant, beyond GCSE C and above in english and maths (or equivalent). A Level 2 or 3 Diploma in Health and Social Care is desirable but not essential, and can be completed while working.

There are also care apprenticeships on offer to get you started. All care assistants who work in adult social care undergo a 12-week induction programme which provides training in the key aspects of being a care assistant.

However, there are still requirements. Here are some values and behaviours you must have to work in care:

  • A passion for care
  • Commitment
  • Collaboration
  • Respect
  • Patience

Salary

 

According to Payscale, the average salary for care assistants in the UK is £18,333. However salary varies hugely depending on location and experience.

Now you’ve got the lowdown, you can start applying to exciting care assistant roles! Plus we’ve got interview tips to help you get the job you want.

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