The Ailing Welfare Service: Reforms of Health and Social Care Needs Proper Scrutiny

Health and social care relates to services which involves helping and assisting those who need extra care and support due to disability, old age, illness and poverty. Local authorities and private organisations with an aim to help them lead a normal life and keep their independence and dignity provide these services.

There are a range of vocational and academic courses like GNVQ, A-Level and S/NVQ, which can be pursued to qualify as a care provider. Subjects involved in health and social care studies are sociology, biology, law, ethics and nutrition that cover every aspect of issues that carers deal with. Those who pursue this line of study get hands on experience through work placements alongside their studies in nurseries; care homes, hospitals and other related establishments.

Various jobs in the health and social care industry are categorised into:

Care Assistant Jobs – Varies according to the nature of the job and is further classified into-

Personal Care Assistant or PCA – Assist people with disability and illness in their day-to-day activities within or outside their homes.

Emergency Care Assistant or ECA – Assist qualified paramedics and medical technicians in accidents and emergency’s. Responds to emergency calls and usually the first responder who observes patients vital signs and take necessary information at the scene.

Ambulance Care Assistant or ACA – Assist in transporting patients to and from the hospital and also admits, transfers and discharges patients. Helps patients to get to their appointments and make sure that they are settled after transporting them back home. Maintaining constant contact with control room when out and about and updating the team with any changes. Responsible for routine check-up and maintenance of allotted hospital vehicle.

Care Home Jobs – Duties involve coordinating care and resources, house cleaning, maintaining personal hygiene, making meals and health improvement activities and exercises.

Community Care Jobs – Provide aid and access to patients based on their personal care plan. Assist in personal hygiene, toilet functions, prescriptions, diet monitoring, attending medical appointments, walking, and exercising, shopping, pension collection, reading, writing and providing companionship.

Nursing Jobs – This role involves a range of duties and a broad scope of responsibility. The job involves working closely with the health care team and administering the prescribed treatment, medication and care given by physicians. Since the role involves close contact and interaction with patients, nurses are expected to have a calming personality and the ability to aid in the recovery process

Health and Social Care – A Recession Proof Career!

Whatever your current situation, whether you are seeking promotion, looking to change career, about to start a new job, taking your first steps into teaching or management, the Health and Social Care sector has something to offer you.

If you have been looking for a job, full time or part time to raise income for your family or build a career around your children, there is room for you in health and social care, the job loss within this sector is very low.

What exactly do I need to do?

The starting point is you need to discover your interest and be willing to develop yourself. There are many aspects within the health and social care sector therefore you will need to decide what client group you would prefer to work with – children, young adults, elderly, individuals with disabilities (physical, cognitive and learning disabilities), specialized care ( stroke, mental disorders, dementia etc)

You will also need to decide the kind of environment – hospitals, care homes, individual homes or education and training.

Once you have made your decision, consider where you are now and what you need to do to get to where you want to be. In most cases your experience and training will count and you need to get both but for some it is how to package their existing experience and training to get the job they desire – You need to improve on areas such as CV writing and interview skills.

Here is a breakdown of courses that you can do to move to the next level.

NVQ Health and Social Care Level 1- This is usually a two weeks training that introduces you to the principles of Health and Social Care. You do not need to be in employment to do this training as it is meant to give you a fundamental understanding of the role of a care worker or support worker. This is the first building block if you are new to Health and Social Care. This course comprises of a one week workshop experience and the second week is a practical experience within a health and social care environment. Afterwards you receive a certificate of attendance. Some of the topics usually covered are:

Basic nursing procedures
Communication
Health and Safety at Work
Moving and handling procedures
Incontinence care
First Aid
Infection Control
Basic food hygiene
Safeguarding and protecting individuals
Confidentiality
Report writing

Most employers will require you present certificates of attendance for some mandatory training in healthcare such as Manual Handling Training, First Aid Training & Basic Food Hygiene. By Law, when you get a job your employer would organize an induction which would provide you with information specific to your role.

Pay rates for this level range from £5 – £8 per hour depending on the employer

NVQ Level 2 – This is the ideal level for you if you are working in Health and Social Care, providing support to professionals, carrying out clinical care, health or personal care to individuals in a hospital or community- based health care setting. It really doesn’t matter if you are new to the job you can enroll on this course. These days if you have been working without an NVQ or other qualification you will be advised by your employer to consider enrolling on NVQ 2 as you may not be allowed to keep your job from the year 2010. Many other employers would only offer jobs to care workers with a minimum of NVQ 2.

This course comprises of 4 mandatory units and 2 optional units based on a skill scan. The mandatory units are:

HSC21- Communication and record keeping

HSC22- Health and Safety at Work

HSC23 – Develop your practice

HSC24 – Protection of Individuals

You will be allowed to choose your 2 optional units from a list based on your skills and job role. This is a very interesting course and you will find it easy if you have been working according to your organizational policies and procedures. Having NVQ 2 Adults would qualify you to work with all groups of adults although you may need to attend trainings in specialized areas coupled with your existing experience, for example if you currently work with the elderly and wish to work with individuals with learning disability, your NVQ 2 adults is relevant except that you will need some additional training which are short courses.

Pay rates for this level range from £6.50 – £10 depending on the employer

NVQ Level 3- At Level 3, the Health and Social Care NVQ has two pathways: “Adults” and “Children and Young People”. This qualification is designed for workers delivering care and support often without direct supervision or probably working on their own in an individual’s own home.

If you are undertaking some supervisory or developmental responsibilities for other care workers or you are involved in other specialist tasks with some degree of responsibility or independence e.g. administration of medicines, NVQ 3 in health and social care is relevant to you.

Common job roles that would qualify you to do the NVQ 3 are senior care workers, team leaders, domiciliary care workers, home care organizers and community support workers.

You will be required to complete 4 mandatory units and 4 optional units based on a skills scan. The mandatory units are:

HSC31 – Promoting Communication

HSC32 – Promoting Health and Safety

HSC33 – Reflect on and develop your Practice

HSC34/ HSC35 – Protecting children (HSC34) or Adults (HSC35)

You will be allowed to choose your 4 optional units from a list based on your skills and job role. This is also a very interesting course and you will find it easy if you have been practicing within health and social care.

There is also a possible progression unto management and teaching roles which requires you achieve qualifications at Level 3 or Level 4. Do you want to know what the A1 Award is about? Or you have heard about PTTLS 7303 and you are wondering what these courses are all about, visit our website today for more information.