A Day in the Life and Responsibilities of a Residential Aged Care Worker
Becoming an aged care worker can be one of the most rewarding jobs where you learn to build relationships and make a positive difference in peoples lives. It can be a challenging yet fulfilling role as you will work with such a diverse group of individuals.
Aged care residents can suffer from illnesses such as dementia, or simply be looking for the security and companionship that comes from living in a supported community with other like-minded people who share similar interests.
What is a Residential Aged Care Worker?
A residential aged care worker’s main role is to help and support and empower elderly people by helping them achieve their daily goals and tasks, as well as enhance their quality of life. Residential aged care workers generally tend to their clients within an aged care facility whereas a community care worker will tend to clients in their own homes in the community.
With an ever-ageing population, there is an increasing demand for aged care workers and opportunities are on the rise here in Australia.
Aged Care Worker Duties & Responsibilities
To ensure both clients’ and the care home needs are being met, the aged care worker must take on a range of significant duties within the care home. These can range from assisting clients both physically and emotionally as well as keeping up to date with administration and paperwork.
Some examples might include:
- Providing clients with help they require to accomplish daily tasks, including bathing, eating, dressing, grooming and using the bathroom
- Ensuring all clients take their prescribed medications
- Building relationships with clients by creating personal connections and taking an interest in their live
- Facilitating group and individual activities with clients
- Maintaining care records and administration in accordance with company policy
A Regular Day For a Residential Aged Care Worker
All tasks and duties will essentially differ depending on the size and location of the care home but generally, the aged care workers day will begin bright and early so they are awake and ready to help before the residents waken for the day.
The morning is a busy an important time of the day, spent preparing the residents for a productive day ahead.
Tasks might include:
- Help residents with personal hygiene or toileting
- Showering or bathing
- Assistance with dressing
- Administering medication
- Preparing them for breakfast
Early Afternoon Activities
The afternoon provides the residents with some valuable spare time to engage in social activities or focus on personal goals. It’s important that you get to know each one of your clients on a personal level so that you aware of their passions and hobbies in order to help them thrive.
It’s important to engage in meaningful conversations and have a laugh too. It’s also ok if the residents would like some down time to simply read a book or watch TV.
Other residents may have other more specific needs such as redressing of wounds or perhaps physical therapy they have been advised to carry out. It’s the residential care workers duty to ensure these essential tasks are all carried out.
At lunch time carers will move those able residents into the dining room to be served lunch. For those who are unable to do so, the care worker will bring lunch to their room and assist with feeding, if necessary.
It’s a fun and light time for the residents to get together and converse over a hearty meal. Medications are administered as required after lunch to those who require it.
The afternoon allows residents the chance to participate in many communal activities such as bingo, gardening or arts and crafts. It’s also an opportune time to get some light exercise with a gentle walk or exercise class.
The centre might take the residents on a day-outing, it’s the residential care workers role to chaperone their clients whilst out and about. Again, it’s important that a residential care worker gets to know each and every one of their clients to understand the activity that will bring the best out in them.
The residential care worker will again assist the able clients to the dining room for dinner and bring dinner to the room of those who aren’t able to make it to the dining room. A care worker will stay and assist any clients who require help, or maybe just provide some company during the meal for those who cannot make the communal setting.
The evening routine will commence after the dinner has been cleared away. Residents will be given the opportunity to take park in a host of communal and individual activities suggested by the aged care worker. These activities might include card games, puzzles, or group discussions.
After the fun and games are over the evening bedtime routine begins for the aged care worker and their clients. These duties are like those in the morning and consist of tasks such as:
- Help with showering or bathing
- Dressing for bed
- Administering medication
Once the residents are tucked up in bed, it’s the best time to get some paperwork done where you can catch up on administration or file any reports from the day. After that, it’s home-time and an important time for you as an aged care worker to think about yourself and caring for yourself.
Working in this industry can be so rewarding but it can also be emotionally taxing so it’s vital that you recharge those batteries before starting a new day over.
If you believe you have what it takes to be a residential care worker and are interesting in the next step towards achieving this goal then get in touch with Centacare to talk about our Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing).