Caregiver talking to an individual holding a walking cane

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you can become an in-home caregiver, also referred to as an individual provider, and get paid to care for family members or friends if they:

  1. Are a Washington state Medicaid client
  2. Are not your spouse
  3. Will receive care in their own home

If you are currently or planning to provide care to a friend or family member who is a Medicaid client, contact the client’s case manager directly. The case manager can help direct you to the next steps.

Check out our webpage about home care aides! We’ll tell you how to find training and get certified.

To work as a home care aide, you must also

  • Pass a background check
  • Be at least 18 years of age

Home care aide training (this is the same training for individual providers and agency providers): The cost and length of training depends on the program you choose. The average cost is about $300 - $500 for required training. If you become an individual provider or work for a home care agency, your union or employer may pay for your training. There may be other opportunities to get assistance paying for your training. Check your local WorkSource Center to see if funding is available.

Nursing assistants certified (CNA): The cost and length of training depends on which program you choose. The average cost is about $500 - $2,000.

Per indeed.com, caregiver wages range from $11-$20 per hour. The average wage for a caregiver in Washington is $14.30 but varies depending on location. Individual Provider wages are determined through the DSHS and SEIU 775 Collective Bargaining Agreement with a starting wage of $16.00-$16.25 per hour.

Interstate License Recognition Options:

  • Many states support military spouse license recognition options by allowing for expedited applications, temporary licenses, or complete license recognition.
  • Military spouses may get temporary practice permit to become a home care aide while completing any specific additional requirement that are not related to training or practice standards for the profession.
  • To find out the rights of a military spouse per state, visit the U.S. Department of Labor website at: https://www.veterans.gov/milspouses

Military Spouse Licensing reimbursement program:

  • If your career requires a professional license or certification, your service branch can help reimburse costs that come up when you PCS. The military services continue to support military spouse employment by offering up to $1,000 in licensure and certification costs resulting from relocations or military moves within the United States or OCONUS to stateside. Find out more at Military Spouse Benefits: Get Reimbursed for Licensure When You PCS.

The Home Care Referral Registry (available in many, but not all, counties throughout Washington) links Medicaid consumers with paid caregivers. Learn how to get on the Referral Registry. Look in your local paper in the help wanted section to see if anyone is looking to hire a paid caregiver. You can also check bulletin boards for ads in local grocery stores, places of worship, senior centers, hospitals, doctor’s offices or libraries

The Family Caregiver Support Program is a service available to unpaid caregivers of adults needing care and living in Washington State. There are local Family Caregiver Support Program offices throughout the state staffed with caring and knowledgeable people who can help you

  • Find local resources/services.
  • Find caregiver support groups and counseling.
  • Get training on specific caregiving topics.
  • Get respite care if you need a break.
  • Talk through specific issues you are having and offer practical information and caregiving suggestions.

Generally, these services are offered free or at low cost. Certain eligibility requirements may apply and availability varies from community to community.

Find the telephone number for your local Family Caregiver Support Program.