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Home Health Aide Certification Online

Find top programs offering accredited online home health aide courses, how the programs work, their cost, and how long it takes to go from school to a home health aide career.

Last Updated: 09/02/2020
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MEET THE EXPERT

Dianne-Barnard
Dianne Barnard

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Dianne Barnard is a Registered Nurse-Board Certified with over 20 years of nursing experience. In addition to her nursing degree, she has a Bachelor of Science in Education and is board certified in both psychiatric and holistic nursing. Dianne has experience working in bedside, oncology, ICU, home-health, clinical nursing instruction, and mental health.

The Best Online Home Health Aide Certification Programs

Many online home health aide certification programs exist, making it necessary for prospective students to do their research and find a respected and effective program that meets their needs. In the list below, students considering this path can review a list of affordable, comprehensive programs with the accreditation they need to begin a rewarding career as a home health aide. Read about some of today’s best home health aide certification programs online.

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About the ranking

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Methodology for EduMed’s 2020 Rankings

To be considered for this ranking, each school must have the following:

  • Institutional accreditation from an organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
  • Program(s) offered at least partially online.

School Metrics Explained

EduMed.org data scientists analyzed government higher education data and created a proprietary algorithm to rank each U.S. postsecondary institution and its online programs using 5 primary factors:

  • Cost: Relative cost of attendance compared to peer schools on the list. Based on tuition and fees per academic year.
  • Online Program Availability: Number of online programs in subject area reported by school to Department of Education.
  • Academic Counseling: Existence of this service on campus or online.
  • Career Placement: Existence of this service on campus or online.
  • Students w/ Institutional Aid: Percentage of students who receive financial aid from the school itself.

About Our Data

EduMed’s rankings use the latest official data available from The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS).

Most recent data pull: February 2020

#School NameTypeCostOnline ProgramsMore DetailsSchool InformationOnline StudentsAcademic CounselingCareer PlacementStudents w/Institutional AidMedian Earnings 10yrs After EntryAccreditation
1Pratt Community CollegePratt, KSPublic$1

Pratt Community College offers short-term training courses that prepare graduates for certification tests in their area of specialty. The online courses last 4-7 weeks. After completing the test-preparation courses, students can sit for their certification examinations up to three times in a calendar year. The Home Health Aide Course is designed for Nurse Aides who want to broaden their knowledge. Students are prepared to work in a home setting, including Home Heath and State Aide’s programs for the elderly and disabled.  Applicants must have a current State Nurse Aide Certification license. Other short courses are for Certified Medication Aide (CMA), Home Health Aide, and Terminology for Health Care Workers.

Program Overview:

Home Health Aide Course (certificate)

  • Credits: Vary by specialty
  • Length: 4-7 weeks
  • Cost: $62/resident credit; $73 credit for nonresidents
  • Mode: Online
  • Accreditation: KSDE, Higher Learning Commission
Academic
Counseling
Yes
Career
Placement
Yes
Students w/
Institutional Aid
80%
AccreditationHigher Learning Commission
2Allen County Community CollegeIola, KSPublic$2

Students at Allen Community College can enroll in a Certified Home Health Aide course. The course prepares students to take the examination for their Certified HHA License from the State of Kansas Department of Health and Environment. The course includes studies for maintaining basic human needs, home management, basic care activities, observing client’s medication, meal planning, special needs, and special procedures in emergency care. Students must complete 45 hours of online classwork and 45 hours of on-site, supervised laboratory and clinical instruction.  Graduates of the courses learn the essentials of teamwork, ethics, compliance, critical thinking and patient care. In addition, students can complete a one-credit course in Basic First Aid/CPR.

Program Overview:

Certified Home Health Aide

  • Credits: 5
  • Cost: $60/credit
  • Mode: Partially Online
  • Additional programs: Home Health Aide, Rehabilitation Aide, Medication Aide.
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
Academic
Counseling
Yes
Career
Placement
No
Students w/
Institutional Aid
73%
AccreditationHigher Learning Commission

Earning Your Home Health Aide Certification Online

Many home health aide certification programs now exist online to help busy students find the time to further their education and their careers without needing to visit campus multiple times per week. According to federal guidelines, home health aide programs only need to provide 16 hours’ worth of clinical experience (which requires in-person training). Because of this, the remaining portion of the program can exist fully online and meet all state and federal mandates. Most programs use a learning management platform such as Blackboard to organize readings, allow peers and professors to communicate, and administer quizzes and exams.

Mostly online

These home health aide programs and classes have most or all of their coursework and resources available online. Research material, complete exercises, collaborate with professors and peers, etc. However, students will need to visit a campus to complete hands-on work as directed by federal training requirements.

Why choose online training for HHA certification?

Online training for home health aide certification is becoming more and more popular as it makes it possible for learners to complete programmatic requirements at times best suited to their unique schedules without needing to drive to/from campus multiple times per week. Online learning offers numerous benefits for students determined to further their educations. Before committing to this option, however, individuals should do their research to make sure it’s right for them. Some of the components to consider include:

Convenience

Any location with a secure and steady internet connection can be used for completing online education programs, making them convenient for individuals with packed schedules. Prospective learners should remember that they must complete at least 16 in-person clinical hours as part of programmatic requirements.

Reputation

When looking at potential community colleges and vocational schools offering home health aide courses, students should ensure they maintain a good reputation. Individuals should look for institutional accreditation – especially if they plan to return to school for a degree, as reputation can affect their ability to receive admission.

Cost

The cost of home health aide programs can vary widely, with schools such as Southern Technical Institute offering programs for as low as $199 and others costing thousands of dollars. Learners should check with the financial aid office to learn about cost, available scholarships and grants, and payment plans before enrolling.

The In’s-and-Out’s of Home Health Aide Certification  

As students begin researching and reviewing prospective home health aide training programs, they may wonder how long it typically takes to move from matriculation to graduation. Put simply, this depends on the state the student lives in. The federal government mandates that programs last at least 75 hours. 33 states follow this mandate. The remaining 17 states follow the National Academy of Medicine’s suggestion of 120 hours. Regardless of the path, home health aide programs can be completed relatively quickly – far more quickly than a traditional diploma or degree path. To begin working, students at bare minimum will need to meet federal training requirements and pass a competency examination.

What are the federal HHA training requirements?

In order to meet federal requirements, home health aide training programs must meet certain criteria. For starters, all programs must total at least 75 hours, 16 of which must be focused on in-person, hands-on clinical training. These hours focus on building the skills needed to interact with and care for patients and includes sessions on communicating effectively, observing and reporting the patient’s health status, taking and recording vital statistics, controlling basic infections, maintaining a clean and safe home, caring for physical, emotional, and developmental needs, attending to personal hygiene and grooming needs, improving range of motion, implementing safe transfer techniques, and providing adequate nutrition.

Understanding HHA training requirements by State

In addition to federal mandates, prospective home health aides must also familiarize themselves with the rules of individual states. As of 2019, 33 states follow the standard federal requirements that mandate 75 hours of general training and 16 hours of clinical training.

Some students may notice that HHA programs frequently mention becoming a certified nurse aide before becoming a home health aide. If you see this, chances are you live in one of the 11 states that maintains this requirement.

While 33 states follow the federal minimum, the remaining 17 states require even more coursework to meet the National Academy of Medicine’s suggestion of 120 hours. If unsure of what your state requires, review PHI’s map demonstrating home health aide training requirements by state.

If your state requires that home health aides receive certification as a nurse aide first, we can help. Check out our page dedicated to online CNA classes to learn more.

Course Overview: Online Home Health Aide Training

When reviewing home health aide curricula, prospective students soon notice that all cover specific clerical and clinical knowledge and skills. The majority of these courses are mandated by the federal government, which requires every program to provide at minimum 59 hours of academic coursework and 16 hours of clinical, hands-on training. The following two sections take a look at some of the skills gained in both online and classroom-based courses.

Home health aide classes that can be taken online:

Creating-safe-home-environments

Creating safe home environments. Students in this course consider some of the everyday items that can act as safety hazards for those they serve. Learners consider outdoor hazards, learn how to assess an environment for safety issues, and how to help their patients avoid situations that would cause them to slip, trip, or fall.

Communicating-effectively

Communicating effectively. This class helps learners build effective communication skills for working with patients and other healthcare providers. Students learn how to observe and identify changes in patients, communicate with family members, and work with their patients to regularly assess comfort and health.

Serving-children

Serving children. This specialized course helps learners develop the unique skills needed to serve children in the home. Some of the specific topics covered include understanding developmental stages, identifying developmental disabilities, navigating family relations, addressing abuse, and providing care to premature infants.

Nutritional-needs

Nutritional needs. Individuals enrolled in this class learn about how to plan, purchase, and serve food to their patients. They learn about “My Plate” guidelines, how to navigate food allergies, proper food preparation and storage, and how to handle feeding issues. They also cover several therapeutic diets.

Home Health Aide clinicals that must be taken in-person/on campus:

Moving-patients

Moving patients. Home health aides in training learn how to properly lift and move patients from beds, chairs, and automobiles in a way that is safe for them and the patient. They also learn about moving other heavy objects such as medical equipment or furniture.

Checking-vitals

Checking vitals. Because their patients aren’t in hospital settings, home health aides must know how to check blood pressure, pulse rate, body temperature, respiration rate, and oxygen saturation.

Cooking-meals

Cooking meals. Students learn how to shop for, prepare, and cook meals that meet specific nutritional requirements. Home health aides must cook for a variety of health concerns, including diabetes, high blood pressure, coeliac, and other diseases that can be partially managed through diet. They must also learn how to store these meals.

Giving-medications

Giving medications. While home health aides cannot prescribe medications, they are often in charge of ensuring their patients take the right dosage at the correct time(s) each day. Examples could include preparing pills, using prescribed creams, or giving injections.

Salary & Career Outlook for Home Health Aide Professionals

Before committing to a career as a home health aide, many individuals want to learn more about how much money they can expect to make each year and whether the career offers stability in the future. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, roles for home health aides and personal care aides are projected to grow by 41% between 2016 and 2026. 2.93 million Americans currently fill these roles, and the BLS projects that 1.21 million new positions will be added during the same time frame.

In terms of income, the BLS found that the 2017 median pay for this profession sat at $23,210, although some industries pay more or less than this figure. Nursing care facilities, for instance, pay the highest average salary of $24,360, while home healthcare services pay the lowest average annual salary of $22,900.

After working as a home health aide for a number of years, some individuals may decide to advance their careers. Some decide to pursue training as a licensed practical nurse by completing a postsecondary certificate/diploma. These individuals earn an average salary of $45,030. After working in this role for a few years, these same individuals may decide to complete an LPN to RN bridge program and become a registered nurse. These individuals earn $70,000 annually. By getting on the path to a career in healthcare by becoming a home health aide, many individuals pursue various paths that help build their skills while also growing their salaries.

Home Health Aide Resources  

After reviewing the information provided in this guide, some would-be students may decide they need more information to make up their minds. The resources highlighted below exist to help make the decision easier.