Personal Support Worker

Infographic: Why Are Personal Support Workers So Important?

April 08, 2021

If you have a caring disposition, working as a Personal Support Worker can be a great career choice after healthcare training. It will allow you to make a real, positive difference in the lives of the clients you work for, helping them manageday-to-day difficulties they encounter so that they can enjoy a fuller life.

What exactly is it that makes Personal Support Workers so important? For those who are considering a career in personal support work after their healthcare courses, here’s a look at some of the specific ways PSWs can make a difference for their clients.

Why Are Personal Support Workers So Important?

Because of ageing, illness, and other circumstances, people sometimes have difficulty completing the everyday tasks that we often take for granted. A Personal Support Worker can help.

Who Benefits From Personal Support Workers?

There are a couple of broad categories of people that benefit greatly from PSWs:

The Elderly

  • About 16.1% of Canadians are 65 or older
  • This should increase to 20.1% by 2024
  • About 33% of Canadian seniors have a disability

Clients with Disabilities

  • There are 3.8 million Canadians living with disabilities that limit their activities
  • About 75% of disabled Canadians have multiple disabilities
  • 26% of people with disabilities rate them as “very severe”

The Value of Personal Support Workers

PSWs Assist with Daily Living

Age and disabilities can make daily tasks very difficult. PSWs can help their clients with many tasks, including but not limited to:

  • Preparing meals
  • Laundry
  • Housekeeping
  • Personal care
  • Personal hygiene
  • Bedside care

They Help Clients Enjoy a Better Quality of Life

More generally, personal support workers help clients

  • Complete strenuous, difficult, or otherwise impossible tasks
  • Maintain access to medical treatments
  • Become more autonomous, and explore the outside world

Personal Support Workers Assist Clients in Various Settings

PSWs are employed to help clients in many settings, including

  • Long-term care facilities
  • Group homes
  • Hospitals
  • Health Centres
  • Private care facilities
  • Even at home!

Because of the Great Work They Do, More PSWs Are Needed

PSWs provide many necessary services, and demand for their services is on the rise

  • Employment growth is expected to be strong
  • A large number of existing PSWs will likely retire soon
  • Historically, this position has low levels of unemployment

Sources:

statcan.gc.ca/pub/89-654-x/89-654-x2015001-eng.htm#a1

medixcollege.ca/Programs/PersonalSupportWorker

statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/150929/dq150929b-eng.htm

canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/publications/health-system-services/ethical-issues-home-care.html

assistedlivingfacilities.org/resources/who-lives-in-assisted-living-/disabled/

who.int/features/factfiles/disability/en

cbc.ca/strombo/news/by-the-numbers-international-day-of-persons-with-disabilities

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