How Much Money Does a Caregiver Make?

by Aurelio Locsin; Updated September 26, 2017
Caregivers may help those in wheelchairs.

Caregivers help disabled, elderly and the chronically ill with life’s daily needs. They may work at the patient’s homes or in residential care facilities. They are also employed in hospices and day care institutions. The Bureau of Labor Statistics classifies them into two main categories -- home health aides and personal care aides -- and their salaries differ by job title and employer. All information is as of May 2010.

Home Health Aides

Home health aides typically work for facilities that receive government funding. Therefore, they must follow certain rules and regulations, such as working under a medical professional such as a nurse. They keep records of patient conditions and progress, and work with other medical staff. No minimum educational background is required. However, they must typically complete a training regimen that consists of 75 hours or more of instruction. They also must pass a competency exam to receive certification for their jobs. Individual states may mandate additional training.

Home Health Aides Salaries

Home health aides make a median wage of $10.46 per hour or $21,760 per year. The lowest 10 percent make less than 7.84 per hour or $16,300 per year, while the highest 10 percent get at least $14.13 per hour or $29,390 per year. Most work for the home health care services industry, where they earn a mean $10.25 per hour or $21,330 per year. Their second biggest employers are residential mental retardation, mental health and substance abuse facilities, where average pay runs $10.59 per hour or $22,020 per year. Their highest paying employers are psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals, where wages run a mean $16.81 per hour or $34,970 per year.

Personal Care Aides

Personal care aides, also called companions and personal attendants, work for agencies that do not receive funding from government sources. They may be supervised by non-medical managers such as social workers. Some may also work for themselves. Though they may receive detailed instructions from their employers, they typically work independently, with periodic visits by supervisors. They do not require a minimum education or training. Instead, they receive most of their training on the job from their employers.

Personal Care Aides Salaries

Personal care aides earn a mean wage of $9.82 per hour or $20,420 per year. The lowest paid 10 percent earn no more than $7.68 per hour or $15,970 per year, and the highest paid 10 percent earn at least $12.45 per hour or $25,900 per year. Most work in individual and family services, where they earn means of $9.93 per hour or $20,650 per year. Ranking second for jobs are home health care services, with average pay at $9.14 per hour or $19,020 per year. They make their highest salaries with psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals at a mean $14.88 per hour or $30,960 per year.

2016 Salary Information for Home Health Aides

Home health aides earned a median annual salary of $22,600 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, home health aides earned a 25th percentile salary of $19,890, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $25,760, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 911,500 people were employed in the U.S. as home health aides.

About the Author

Aurelio Locsin has been writing professionally since 1982. He published his first book in 1996 and is a frequent contributor to many online publications, specializing in consumer, business and technical topics. Locsin holds a Bachelor of Arts in scientific and technical communications from the University of Washington.

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