Growing need for home health workers in Tampa

Posted at 2:48 PM, Apr 26, 2016

There is a growing need for qualified home health care workers in the Tampa Bay area.

Seventeen percent of Florida's residents are now 65 years old and older, leaving many families looking for caregivers who also have basic medical training, including CPR skills.
Porter Companion Care in Tampa is currently hiring home healthcare workers. CEO Milagro Porter says the baby boomer population is growing, and she now needs more workers.
Porter started her business after struggling to find qualified caregivers to care for her mother, who was on dialysis.
"It's frustrating at times," Porter said. "Because you don't know and you're kind of put in a place where it's difficult. "
She ended up handling the primary care of her mother at home.
"It's very hard," she said. "It's difficult."
Her mother passed away nearly one year ago. Now, Porter is working to launch her own local home healthcare business- providing families like hers with quality caregivers.
 Some caregivers are merely companions who help with household chores and laundry. The pay can start at $9/hour, Porter said.
But for those looking to make more, you can get a license to become a certified nursing assistant who helps with medications. That requires a short training program and fingerprinting. Some home healthcare companies will even pay for the certification.
Some go on to become registered nurses.
"This is definitely a stepping stone," Porter said.
This comes as many home health care companies are still in desperate need for caregivers who live in more rural areas of Manatee, Highlands and Pasco counties. Often, she hires those looking for flexible hours who can also provide great care.
"If it was a bad day for that client, what did you do to make that day go better?" Porter said.
That's the kind of care she wishes she could have hired for her mother.
These are just a few of the local home health care companies hiring: