A Personal Assistant (PA) is someone who supports vulnerable adults to live their lives more independently. They may offer support in everyday activities such as shopping, leisure activities, washing and personal care.
Looking at the role of a PA
Brighton & Hove City Council have sponsored a free e-learning course "Induction to being a PA". This online course gives you an opportunity to learn more about the role and responsibilities of a PA, listen to case studies and test your knowledge.
For a username and password to access the e-learning, please email your details to firstname.lastname@example.org
Support with confidence
Support with Confidence is a council initiative, a partnership between our Adult Social Care and Trading Standards services. The scheme provides a register of approved Personal Assistants (PDF 381KB). To become approved the Personal Assistant has had an enhanced DBS (previously CRB) check, two reference checks, successfully completed ten training modules and sign the code of conduct.
Please note that CRB checks are valid for 3 years (dates on PA profile). DBS checks do not have an expiry date. PA's can pay £13 per year to update their DBS online if they move to a new employer.
What training modules do Personal Assistants complete?
- The role of the Personal Assistant
- Understanding the role of the health and social care worker
- Understanding and maintaining personal development
- Communicating effectively
- Understanding equality and diversity
- Recognising principle for implementing duty of care
- Knowing and understanding the principles of safeguarding in health and social care
- Understanding person centred support
- Maintaining health and safety in an adult social care setting
- Free choice of module for Personal Assistant
Some training needs to be updated on a regular basis. Where applicable recommended updates will be marked on the PA profile.
Personal Assistants for children and young people with disabilities
Extratime are delighted to be working in partnership with Brighton and Hove Council to train Personal Assistants to work with children and young people with disabilities.
Personal Assistants trained by Extratime will have had an enhanced DBS check (previously CRB), two reference checks and will have successfully completed five modules of training. A significant part of the training provided is on placement with Extratime in their after school clubs.
Once they have successfully completed the training Personal Assistants will be issued with a numbered certificate confirming their status as an approved Personal Assistant, and they will be added to the register of approved Personal Assistants with the Extratime logo next to their name.
Parents and carers can recruit Personal Assistants from the Approved Register to work with their children and young people safe in the knowledge that they have been checked and trained by Extratime, who have over 10 years experience working with children and young people with disabilities.
What training modules do Extratime trained Personal Assistants complete?
- Understanding your role as a Personal Assistant
- Equality and diversity
- Safeguarding and child protection
- Health and safety
How can I find an approved Personal Assistant?
Check the approved register of Personal Assistants (PDF 381KB) which includes a brief profile of all candidates. If you want to employ an approved Personal Assistant from the register please contact them directly.
If you employ a PA please be aware of the responsibilities this entails. The PA will be your employee and will depend on you for a proportion of their regular income, they will be entitled to sick pay, holidays and a notice period for example.
For tax and insurance purposes it is very important that you are properly informed and follow correct procedures with regards to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (the tax office).
Find out more about the support and advice available to people employing personal assistants.
Becoming an approved Personal Assistant
Opportunities for Personal Assistants
There is a growing need for Personal Assistants as the government has made it clear that people should have choice about how they improve their lives if they are in need of care and/or support. Most people want to stay in their own homes and also want to employ someone who becomes familiar with their lifestyle to support them or the person they are employing a Personal Assistant for.
A Personal Assistant is usually paid a higher rate than a worker in a care home or a home care worker in an agency as it is one-to-one arrangement. The job can be very flexible, offering part-time and full-time work on different days and at different times. Some people become a Personal Assistant part-time while also working in an entirely different job. It is also suitable for someone who is retired and may only want a few hours a week, or someone in college who may only want to work evenings or weekends.
Support with Confidence offers free training, carries out enhanced disclosure & barring (previously criminal records) checks and approves Personal Assistants who successfully complete the criteria of the scheme. Successful applicants are added to the register and are issued with a numbered certificate as proof of their approved status.
How do I become an approved Personal Assistant?
- We recommend that you read the Personal Assistant information leaflet [PDF 475kb]
- You must then read and agree to the Personal Assistant code of conduct [PDF 365kb] document
- Finally complete the Personal Assistant application form [PDF 1.32MB]
Once your application is complete please send it to:
Support with Confidence
2nd Floor, Bartholomew House
As adult social care changes residents will have more choice and more control over the support they need. We are moving away from telling people what services they can receive, to a system where individuals can make a choice about the kind of support they have. All this fits in with Self Directed Support.
If you would like more information please contact us:
- Email: email@example.com
- Telephone: (01273) 296424
For both becoming and employing a PA
- Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS)
- PA Network
- Social Care Institute for Excellence
Becoming a PA
Employing a PA
- Being the Boss
- Independent Living Advocacy
- Independent Living Alternatives
- Log on to Care
- National Centre for Independent Living
- Skills for Care
- Toolkit to help employ Personal Assistants
- A Guide to Using Direct Payments (PDF 303kb)
If you are not entirely satisfied with the scheme and would like to make a complaint then please read the complaints procedure (PDF 64kb)
The Personal Assistant (PA) Noticeboard is run by the Brighton and Hove Federation of Disabled People. It provides a list of PAs who are looking for work and vacancies offered by employers for PAs. Go to www.bhfederation.org.uk to find out more about this scheme.
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