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The Care Industry

The care industry is a collection of services and goods that work to improve health. It can range from curing an illness, to managing a condition, and everything in between. It all depends on what type of care a person requires.

The Care Industry

The care industry is a collection of services and goods that work to improve health. It can range from curing an illness, to managing a condition, and everything in between. It all depends on what type of care a person requires.

What is the care industry?

The care industry is a collection of services that work towards treating patients with curative, preventive and rehabilitative health issues. There are two larger sectors within the care industry: the hospital industry and the long term sector. The type of care a person requires depends on what health issue they are dealing with. Hospitals treat short term ailments such as surgeries or broken bones. Long term care focuses more on those who need assistance in day to day life such as elderly people or people with disabilities. The care industry is one of the largest economic sectors, it is expected that about 2.4 million more jobs will be added to the care industry by 2029. This makes it rich with opportunity for those looking to find employment because of it’s job stability and the growing demand for workers. There are many jobs and variations to look for in the care industry, which means there is a place for everyone. Read on to learn more about the varying types of care.

Long Term Care Careers

Long term care is a variety of services which help meet both the medical and non-medical needs of people at all ages, from children to elders, with a chronic illness or disability who cannot care for themselves for long periods. Long term care is focused on individualized and coordinated services that promote independence, maximize patients’ quality of life and meet patients’ needs over a period of time.

The most common type of long term care is personal care—help with everyday activities, also called “activities of daily living.” These activities include bathing, dressing, grooming, using the toilet, eating and moving around—for example, getting out of bed and into a chair.

Long term care services also address the needs of individuals who are recovering from illness or disability, such as those who have experienced a stroke or hip or knee replacement and require rehabilitation services such as physical therapy and additional nursing care before they can be independent in the community.

Long term care career options include in home care, assisted living residences and nursing homes.


Patient and Caregiver with glasses on

Who needs long term care?

People often need long term care when they have a serious, ongoing health condition or disability. The need for care can arise suddenly, such as after a heart attack. Most often, however, it develops gradually, as people get older and frailer or as an illness or disability gets worse.

Several things increase the risk of needing long-term care:

  • Age—The risk generally increases as people get older.
  • Gender—Women are at higher risk than men, primarily because they often live longer.
  • Marital status—Single people are more likely than married people to need care from a paid provider.
  • Lifestyle—Poor diet and exercise habits can increase a person’s risk.
  • Health and family history—These factors also affect risk.


What are the different types of long term care services?

Home Health Care Careers

Home health care involves part-time medical services ordered by a physician for a specific condition. These services may include nursing care to help a person recover from surgery, an accident or illness. Home health care may also include physical, occupational or speech therapy and temporary home health aide services.

Homemaker and Personal Care Services Careers

Homemaker and personal care services can be purchased without a physician’s order. Homemaker services include help with meal preparation and household chores. Personal care includes help with bathing and dressing.

Assisted Living Careers

Assisted living includes personal care and health services provided in a residential setting. The level of care is not as extensive as a nursing home.

Nursing Home Careers

Nursing homes are residential facilities that provide a high level of supervision and care for  people needing more help with their day-to-day activities. Personal care, lodging, supervision, nursing, help with medication, therapy and rehabilitation are all provided on site, 24 hours a day.



Personal Care AssistantHome Health AideCertified Nursing Aide
Most work in clients’ homes or assisted living facilities
Most work in hospitals, long-term care facilities, and rehabilitation centers
May work with one patient or a small number of patients
Administers medications and checks vital signs
Helps clients with daily living—exercise, walking, bathing, grooming
Assists with light housekeeping, meal prep and errands
Requires formal training and certification in NYS*
40 hours for PCA II
None for PCA I
Exam required

75 hours
Plus clinical training and final exam

100+ hours
Plus clinical training and standardized testing and certification
Requires criminal history record check
Requires a physical exam
May require a high school diploma, GED and/or reading comprehension standard
Most direct path to becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse or RN

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