There are three basic federal regulations that apply to home health aides:
- HHAs working in a Medicare-participating agency must complete 75 hours of training and/or they must pass a competency evaluation before they begin working. Training may be at a community college, high school, or home health agency. State laws may require training in specific areas as well as certification through a standardized test. New rules also include passing a criminal background check prior to employment, and demonstrating the ability to read, write, and give oral reports.
- HHAs must have at least twelve hours of education (in-service training) every year. Home health agencies are required to offer these courses for their employees. However, it is your responsibility to successfully complete twelve hours of courses each year. An agency will not allow you to work if you have not met the twelve-hour in-service training requirement. Many states require more than twelve hours.
- HHAs must comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) rules about bloodborne pathogens, Standard Precautions, and tuberculosis. OSHA is a federal government agency that makes rules to protect workers from hazards on the job.