Caregivers can make a big difference in the lives of their patients as well as their families, but this doesn’t mean anyone can do the job. There is a whole list of skills and qualities that people have to have to be successful and provide their clients with the best possible care. Some of these include:
Being compassionate means that you have to be able to understand other people’s distress and also have the desire to alleviate it. This is of the utmost importance because a lot of the elderly people are in distressing or downright painful situations. Therefore, you have to be empathetic and caring if you want to be a caregiver. It may not seem like a ‘hard’ skill, but it is vital to a caregiver’s work.
It is also essential for caregivers to be good at communication, both verbal and written. Even if the client is not able to communicate in the traditional way of writing and speaking, you will have to interact with other caretakers and family members for discussing their care and giving updates on their conditions. You will also have to interact with doctors, medical professionals and nurses and rely their instructions to the families as well. The care certificate standard 1 answers indicate that communication is required in all certifications for home caregivers.
Talking or walking with your patients is not enough; there are times when your patient will not be able to articulate what they are feeling or what is happening to their health. It is possible that they may also try to actively hide something from you. Thus, you have to have sharp observation skills and should be able to identify changes in your patient’s condition and make a note of them.
Along with these skills, you also have to have good interpersonal, time management and organizational skills.