24,263 Care Assistant Jobs in the UK

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Those working as a care assistant will often tell you that duties change practically daily. Most positions will feature a standard 40-hour week. However, working schedules will depend on the sector, with many care assistant employers requiring you to work shifts, which may include nights and weekends. For care assistant jobs in social settings, daily routines will likely involve helping clients with washing, feeding and getting exercise, as well as providing emotional support, building relationships with them and identifying any needs they may have. Some care assistant jobs may require you to live-in with a patient, whilst other care assistant employers may only offer part-time positions.

Care assistant jobs can be found in a variety of sectors, meaning those working as a care assistant will see large differences in their daily routines. For example, care assistants in hospitals will likely be more involved in washing and dressing patients, making beds and monitoring conditions more than say a care assistant in a care home would. Likewise, care assistant employers in the health care and GP surgery sector will expect you to be more involved in performing health checks, processing lab samples and carrying out health education and promotion duties.

Care assistant jobs do not require any initial formal education or experience. As such, care assistant employers often look for certain personality traits when hiring newcomers. Such skill sets desirable by care assistant employers include having a friendly and supportive nature, being emotionally sensitive, calm under pressure and able to work well as part of a team. These skills along with a good general education are often enough for care assistant jobs.

It should be noted that some care assistant employers may require applicants to also have relevant experience or a National Certificate or National Qualification, all of which can be gained though numerous apprenticeship programs existing throughout the UK. Most care assistant employers provide a 12-week training course to all new starters, with this covering basic principles such as care, safety and social skills. Some care assistant jobs will require a background and medical check, particularly those working as a care assistant with children and vulnerable adults.

There are often many care assistant jobs available in the UK, with the position in high demand with care assistant employers such as nursing homes. Major care assistant employers include social services and NHS and private nursing homes. Care assistant career prospects are good, with the majority of care assistant employers providing opportunities to take professional development courses. Once an NVQ level 3 in Health and Social Care has been attained, those working as a care assistant will have the opportunity to progress to a supervisory/managerial role, as well as become qualified to train to be a nurse. Care assistant jobs provide an extensive range of transferable skills which can be used in variety of different roles within the health & social care sector. Average salaries for those working as a care assistant range from £12,000 – £15,000, with this rising to £18,000 for care assistant jobs in London.

There are of course both pros and cons to working as a care assistant. Firstly, the job can be very demanding, in terms of long hours, physical, repetitive work and often stressful situations. Add to this the low starting salary for some positions and it can be understandable why working as a care assistant is not for everyone. However, there are also many advantages to the role, with it providing incredible job satisfaction and a very good introduction to what working in the health sector can involve. Many people who began working as a care assistant go onto train for other positions in the industry, particularly nursing, with the role providing excellent experience and training. The health care sector is very strong in regard to job stability and opportunities for professional development, whilst the size of the sector means it is much easier to switch roles once you have worked in the industry.

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