The Role and Responsibilities of a PA (for PAs)
One of the main reasons people choose to employ their own staff is the flexibility it offers in terms of how and when their support is given, to best meet their outcomes.
The Personal Assistant (PA) role involves much more than personal care. There are many potential roles and responsibilities for a PA; supporting an employer at work, at college, or in social activities. Some PAs may be only asked to provide a low level of personal care and may be involved in supporting the person in a variety of other ways. There may be a team of PAs with different roles based on their skills, with each team member having a different role. The tasks required of each role should be decided before the PA is recruited.
The tasks carried out by the PA will generally be set by their employer and should be set out in the job description.
PAs have the same responsibilities as other employees in relation to attendance and performance at work. As with other members of the social care workforce, PAs should meet the following requirements of the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) Code of Practice:
- Protect the rights and promote the interests of supported individuals and carers
- Work to establish and maintain the trust and confidence of supported individuals and carers
- Promote the independence of supported individuals while protecting them as far as possible from danger or harm
- Respect the rights of supported individuals while making sure that their behaviour does not harm themselves or other people
Good communication between PA Employer and PA is essential. It is good practice to have regular meetings to discuss work issues and to give both parties the opportunity to raise any issues around work. Both parties should be confident that they are able to raise any issues and will be listened to by the other.
It is a PA Employer’s responsibility to ensure that their PAs receive all mandatory training so that they can carry out their job safely. It is the PAs responsibility to work as trained. More information about training can be found in the resource section below.
PA Employers should let their PAs know what is expected of them if they are unwell and unable to come to work. This should include information around letting them know they are unwell and what documentation has to be produced during an extended absence period.
Care plan or work notebook
It is good practice for a PA to note down anything significant that has occurred during their shift, especially if their employer has other PAs who should know what has been done before they start their shift. This helps with continuity of support and keeps everyone informed.
It is good practice for PA Employers to have a plan in place in the event of an emergency. It is important that PAs know where this plan is and what is expected of them in an emergency.
Independent support and guidance is available to PAs from the Personal Assistants Network Scotland who can be contacted via resource link below.