Guide to Home Health Aide Services in Alabama

by Home_Health_Care

Home Health Aide Regulations in Alabama

Home health agencies do not require licensing in the state of Alabama. However, agencies can apply for Medicare/Medicaid certification through the Department of Public Health’s Division of Provider Services. Call the department at (334) 206-5175 for an application package.

A lack of home health licensing requirements makes it all the more surprising that Alabama is one of few states that offers a state-sponsored home health care program. The Alabama Department of Public Health’s Bureau of Home & Community Services division operates a Medicare-certified home health program that serves all counties.

How to Become a Home Health Aide in Alabama

Working for the State of Alabama
Working for the state-sponsored home health program is an attractive option for many home health aides since you receive the benefits of state employees and have opportunity for advancement. The salary range for a home health aide is between $20,174 and $28,516.

Home health aides working for the state must meet the following requirements:

  1. Education (at least one of the following): High School Diploma, GED, completion of 11th grade and one year experience in a home health facility, or completion of 10th grade and two years experience in a home health facility
  2. Training: Eligible for national certification as a home health aide
  3. Proof of Skills: Satisfactory evaluation in conjunction with the required training

Where to Receive Home Health Aide Training
The National Association for Home Care & Hospice offers a nationally-recognized home health aide certification program includes training, skills evaluation, and a written exam. For more information about the NAHC home health aide certification program, call (202) 547- 7424.

Shelton State Community College in Tuscaloosa runs a two-semester, 24-credit Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide Certificate Program. Students who complete the course can then pass the Nurse Aide Examination are placed on the Alabama Nurse Aide Registry.

Oftentimes, home health aide training will be provided by an agency. Check with the agencies you apply with to be sure they are covering the cost of on-site or off-site training they require at the start of employment.

Find a Home Health Aide Job in Alabama
Home health aide positions currently have a “continuously open” status in the state. Visit the Alabama State Personnel Job Board to view home health aide opportunities or to apply.

If you want to find employment with a private agency, popular online job boards can be helpful in your search. Below are some of the best job boards to use:

How to Find a Home Health Aide in Alabama

The state operates a Medicare-certified home health program that serves all counties. For more information on state-sponsored home health services, lookup your county in the Home Care Agency Contacts.

Medicare offers a Home Health Compare tool which lets you not only find home health agencies, but also check if a particular agency is Medicare certified. Another good online resource for finding home health facilities is the Care Pathways provider directory which lists agencies by city.

How to Choose an Alabama Home Health Aide

Assessing your family’s needs is just as important as assessing potential home health providers. Make sure you know exactly which type of services you’ll need before interviewing agencies and independent aides.  Below are some questions to help you during your search.

Questions to ask yourself before hiring a home health aide:

  • What level of assistance will my loved one require from a home health aide? (Will they need basic shopping errands, or nursing assistance?)
  • How much time does my loved one need the assistance of a home health aide? (What level of support will they need – a drop by, part time or full time aide)
  • How will I pay for home health services? (Do you qualify for Medicare or Medicaid assistance? Will your insurer cover the costs? Will you need to pay out of pocket?)

Questions to ask an Alabama Home Health Agency:

  • Is your agency Medicare certified? (This means they meet national standards to qualify for Medicare certification)
  • What kind of training do your aides receive?
  • Can you provide me with references from doctors or patients?

Questions to ask a home health aide:

  • Have you completed any training or certification programs?
  • Are you on the Alabama Nurse Aide Registry? (This means the aide has completed an approved training program and passed the state exam)
  • Have you worked for an agency before?

Alabama Home Health Resources

The following sources were used in this article:

Photo Credit by Highways Agency

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