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How do I become a personal care worker?

Becoming a personal care worker in Australia is an engaging and rewarding experience. In Victoria, the route to becoming a professional in this field first involves attaining a Certificate III in Individual Support.

This certificate meets the minimum education requirements for this profession and will teach you how to care for an older person’s needs overall. It will also train you in the safety requirements you must follow when working in the industry.

Where we can help

The Certificate III offered by Skills Training is divided into three streams of specialisation, including:

  • Ageing;

  • Home and Community; and

  • Ageing, Home and Community.

These will teach you about following safety procedures, recognising health body systems, communication skills, empowering the elderly, providing individual support and more.

The course will train you in both technical and soft skills, including all things showering, dressing and helping the elderly eat. You will also learn how to support patients’ mobility and plan for care in the long-term.

Our experts at Skills Training will also train you in the requirements of the Aged Care Act 1997 – the national legislative framework for regulation and funding of this industry, and the Accountability Principles 2014.

The course also further requires you to undertake a period of practical experience. This will involve a traineeship in an aged care facility, where you can get hands-on experience in real-world scenarios. A work placement will give you a real insight into what being a professional in the field is really like and will ease the move from student to worker. Moreover, it’ll boost your resume, and show future employers that you have attained practical experience to assist you in starting your new role.

Further career pathways

Following the Certificate III is the optional Certificate IV in Ageing Support. This qualification takes what you learnt in Certificate III and your employment, and launches it to the next level. It will help you take on a more managerial role in the aged care industry and navigate you towards the path of a supervisor or a team leader.

Like Certificate IIII, this also will come with a practical traineeship. This certificate is increasing in demand, as the Australian Government expects around 50,000 job openings in the aged care support sector over the next five years.

Although not compulsory, other useful qualifications recommended by Victorian Skills Gateway to assist in becoming a competitive personal care worker include:

  • First Aid (so that you can medically assist elderly patients in the event an emergency occurs);

  • A food handling and hygiene certificate; and

  • A Safe Lifting Practices certificate.

The Aged Care Act 1997 furthermore requires that Approved Providers of aged care undertake a national police check. Alternatively, you can apply for a Police certificate using a CrimTrac-accredited agency.

Note, however, that persons convicted of murder, sexual assault or convicted of (and sentenced to imprisonment) any other form of assault are not permitted to work within the industry.

Learn more about your career options with Skills Training by calling us on 1300 656 669.


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