E-learning has become a significant part of every worker’s professional development. About 40% of the world’s wealthiest companies use it to train their members while 80% of employers have tapped the method since 2011.
Both private and government agencies have discovered that e-learning courses can help produce better employees, including the staff providing elderly care in all settings. Unsurprisingly, the online learning market has reached USD$315 billion in 2021, and industry experts estimate the sector will experience a 20% compound annual growth rate from 2022 to 2028. Hence, states and industry associations have accreditation processes for online training for agencies, including one for Personal Care Aide or PCA training.
Whether eyeing to become a PCA or already working as one, discover how online training for agencies works and how it can help boost senior care.
How Does Online Training For Agencies Work?
Online training, otherwise known as e-learning, is an automated teaching method that uses electronic resources, digital devices, and, in most cases, the internet. Online training in most contexts also requires software installed over mobile devices or the office computer.
With it, learners can access learning resources and assess their learning skills with quizzes and exams before moving to a more advanced section. Online training for agencies may be embedded with text and audio while some have videos and images. Additionally, learners can have access via an internet connection or a closed network. The former method is often employed in most distance education settings. At the same time, the latter may be more suited to senior care agencies where staff members must key in their username and password to access various training modules to provide quality elderly care.
How Online Training For Agencies Helps Improve Senior Care
Online training for agencies is highly beneficial for employees in the senior care sector, which is expecting a surge in demand for their services. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the industry will need 33% more Personal Care Assistants from 2020 to 2030, or about 599,800 individuals annually. An increase in the elderly population continues to drive the soaring demand for PCA, and agencies can tap customized online training software to improve care delivery.
Below is a list of reasons why online training can enhance employees’ skills in tending to elderly patients:
Online Training Provides Flexibility
Whether a full-time student or working while pursuing a course and certification, flexibility is paramount to individuals. Online training is an attractive option for students who can’t or don’t want to spend hours commuting to and from a classroom or attending weekend classes.
For instance, learners with full-time jobs can perform their duties and concentrate on the online training module when they’re ready and have no pending tasks. Students who have personal responsibilities can do the same.
Because they can access the course at their own pace and time, learners can absorb the lessons better instead of getting distracted. It also helps that e-learning training can incorporate different media types, targeting all participants regardless of their learning style.
Moreover, online training for agencies can be designed based on the different contexts the staff may find themselves in. For instance, PCAs can work in various settings such as hospitals, care homes, and other similar facilities. However, their services may also be needed in private homes and communities, which may require different skill sets and standards of care.
An e-learning platform can be customized according to the needs of one company or the department under it. Thus, online training for agencies providing senior care can have their learning system based on their target patients or specialties. It can also be tweaked based on the attendees they hope to have.
Basic training can be offered during the onboarding process while current team members can access a separate module for advanced employees who want to improve their professional skills. That said, new and old PCAs and caregivers can have different e-learning courses suited to their knowledge and skills. Armed with the proper training, caregivers gain the confidence in administering adequate attention to aging patients, particularly elderly people with chronic or special conditions.
Unlike traditional training methods where learning is confined to the four corners of the training center, online training can be accessed anywhere. Caregivers and nursing home aides who need additional resources to provide quality care can download the application on any mobile device.
Doing this is essential, primarily if they’re assigned on a graveyard shift and supervisors may not be around to assist them. While in-person coaching is crucial, access to valuable resources around the clock can give the care staff confidence in handling challenging situations.
It Facilitates Better Learning
Research has discovered that social interaction is vital in learning. These interactions can be done through monitoring, peer sharing, reciprocal teaching, coaching, observing, and others. As is the case for group work or one-on-one sessions with facilitators of online training for agencies, engaging in discussions with other people helps learners understand the lessons, improve their reasoning, and pick up relevant realizations by sharing their experiences and concerns.
Online courses can also boost learners’ memory retention because of the different media types and the real-life examples to expound concepts and principles. Instead of spending time listening to hours of in-person lectures and writing down notes, the staff can concentrate on learning. Additionally, they can assess their knowledge of the subject by taking quizzes and reviewing their answers as many times as possible.
Online learning and the elderly care sector are both highly regulated industries. The state, industry, and professional associations often set requirements that agencies have to comply with to obtain or renew their permits. One such requirement is having qualified staff who’ve undergone training and possess the required certifications.
Senior facility managers can monitor the staff’s online training performance with online training for agencies. Additionally, as more medical information is released about common elderly health issues like Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, and dementia, the standards of care may also be revised.
As online training platforms are scalable, agencies can keep up with these changes and pass on the updated learning modules to their students, alongside scenario-based lessons. Care facilities are assured that the PCAs or carers are highly qualified and can administer quality care based on updated guidelines and state regulations.
What Are The Requirements For A PCA Education?
If the discussion above has piqued your interest in becoming a personal care aide, you might want to know how to become one.
Typically, you only need a high school diploma to start your journey as a care assistant. Then, look for a state-accredited school that offers caregiving or similar courses. You’ll receive a basic elderly care certification once you complete the training. A registered nurse will assess your competency and skills while performing a hands-on practical test to complete your certification.
A study about a three-month e-learning method for home caregivers with dementia patients in Taiwan has concluded that online training and support, coupled with in-person meetings, is an innovative and promising approach. Researchers claimed that it helps home carers improve their competence, attitude, and knowledge. This finding confirms that online training for agencies complemented by mentoring and hands-on experience is practical.
Being flexible, accessible, updated, and compliant with the regulations and standards are the keys to online training’s efficiency—giving your employees the confidence to provide care across all settings and even in challenging environments.