Industries & Professions /
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that in 2012, 759,970 workers were employed in providing services for the elderly and people with disabilities. Of these, the largest single occupational workforce is personal care aides, with almost 354,400 workers. They do not provide health care but instead provide companionship and help with daily living activities such as bathing, dressing, doing light housekeeping, shopping, and arranging for transportation. No diploma, degree, or certification is needed to be hired for the low level of skills this job demands, but many employers prefer high school graduates, and criminal background checks are often required. States vary on the type of training they mandate, which ranges from on-the-job training by a manager or more-experienced aide to classes given by a community college or adult-education program.