Community‐based personal support workers' satisfaction with job‐related training at the organization in Ontario, Canada: Implications for future training Academic Article uri icon

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  • Background and aims

    Complexity of community-based homecare for older adults has increased significantly in the past decade in Ontario, Canada. Personal support workers (PSWs), who are unregulated and vary in formal education, provide the majority of community homecare work for increasingly complex clients. This paper seeks to understand community-based PSWs' satisfaction with opportunities for job-related training at their employing organization to provide the skills and knowledge to meet the demands of their evolving role.


    Data for this paper are from a cross-sectional survey of 1746 community-based PSWs in Ontario, Canada entitled, "The PSW Health and Safety Matters Survey" This survey was part of a research project "Keeping Community Based PSWs Safe in a Changing World of Work," funded by the Ontario Ministry of Labour. The data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, correlations, multivariate regression, and thematic analysis.


    Quantitative analysis revealed most community homecare organizations offer PSWs job-related training to help them retain and update their skills and that PSWs have a moderate level of satisfaction with their job-related training. The analysis revealed that PSWs' satisfaction with organizational training is greater when the organization provides work-related training on challenging tasks, lifting and transferring tasks, and tasks delegated by nurses and supervisors. Data from the open-ended question highlighted seven key themes for desired training by PSWs: safe body mechanics for moving/lifting clients, managing aggression primarily with clients, infection control, CPR/first aid, mental illness, equipment training, and basic health and safety.


    Implications for factors associated with PSWs' satisfaction with opportunities for job-related training are discussed along with recommendations for mitigating variability in education and training to meet the demands of their evolving role.

publication date

  • January 2022