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Health Education Assistant

Salary: Health Education Assistant (#3906)

$14.15-$17.28 hourly / $2,462-$3,005 monthly / Range: 4646

Health Education Assistant, Senior (#3907)

$15.33-$18.71 hourly / $2,666-$3,255 monthly / Range: 4806

DEFINITION: Under general supervision, assists professional staff by conducting routine nutrition education classes for, and at the Senior level, provides counseling to, program participants of the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Nutrition Program; and performs related duties as required.

DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS: This is a paraprofessional class series.

Health Education Assistant is the entry-level classification. Incumbents learn the WIC Nutrition Program rules and regulations, and apply their knowledge of basic nutrition/health concepts in order to conduct the routine group educational classes and demonstrations, as well as provide clerical program support.

Health Education Assistant, Senior is the advanced journey-level classification. Incumbents have major responsibility for counseling low-risk program participants on nutrition and breast-feeding, in addition to conducting the routine educational classes, and performing other program support functions. Work assignments at the Senior level require a higher degree of technical knowledge, independent judgment, and skill to assess participants' dietary intake and growth, and formulate plans for action.

These classes are not part of a flexible-staffing series.

EXAMPLES OF DUTIES:

1. Conducts routine group education classes and demonstrations at clinic sites on nutrition and health topics such as healthy snacks, dental health, and parenting; assists professional staff with program orientation classes; explains WIC rules and regulations, participant rights and responsibilities, and use of program vouchers; ensures that the participants understand nutrition concepts and information by initiating discussion and/or answering questions; distributes informational material to participants; assists staff in preparing educational materials, operating audio/visual aids, or displaying material on bulletin boards.
2. Determines participant's eligibility, obtains participant's nutrition and diet history information; weighs and measures participant as needed; enters participant information into the automated system; may provide office support by assisting staff with clinic schedules, inventory and control of office equipment, and ordering of supplies, security and inventory of program vouchers, and acting as an interpreter/translator.
3. At the Senior level, provides individual counseling to low-risk infants, children, and pregnant, breast-feeding, and post-partum women; obtains participant's diet intake and growth status; assesses participant's nutritional status; discusses food value, food preparation, prevention and control of diseases, and strategies to improve diet; documents participant's progress and eligibility; identifies participants with potential problems or special needs and refers participants to a professional staff or to appropriate community resources as required; conducts the infant nutrition classes; assists professional staff with community outreach to promote the program.

EMPLOYMENT STANDARDS: Health Education Assistant

1. Two years of journey-level clerical experience in a community health program that required considerable public contact providing basic nutrition or health information to clients, and explaining program rules and regulations; or,
2. two years of experience performing duties equivalent to an Office Assistant II, or Health Services Aide, Sr. with Santa Barbara County that required considerable public contact providing basic nutrition or health information to clients, and explaining program rules and regulations; or,
3. a combination of training, education, and experience that is equivalent to one of the employment standards listed above and that provides the required knowledge and abilities.

Additional Qualifications: Possession of a California Class C Driver's License is required at time of appointment.

Knowledge of: basic nutrition or health concepts; office procedures and practices; English usage and grammar; and computer operations.

Ability to: learn the WIC rules and regulations; make group presentations and lead discussions; interpret and explain rules and regulations; learn health education techniques and methods; effectively communicate program information to a wide range of people; document client status; establish and maintain working relationships with superiors, co-workers and the public; learn group dynamics and human behavior; maintain client confidentiality.

Supplemental Information: Incumbents must be willing to travel to clinic sites, and work evenings and weekends. Bilingual skills may be required for some positions.

EMPLOYMENT STANDARDS: Health Education Assistant, Senior: Completion of college courses in three of the following areas: basic nutrition; food and nutrition for infants; food and nutrition for preschoolers and toddlers; child development; and health education (two of the required courses must be in nutrition; and duplication of courses is not allowed); and,

1. two years of paraprofessional experience in a community nutrition program that required some interviewing/counseling; or,
2. two years of experience performing duties equivalent to a Health Education Assistant with Santa Barbara County that required some interviewing/counseling, or,
3. a combination of training, education, and experience equivalent to one of the employment standards listed above and that provides the required knowledge and abilities.

Note: Although not required for this position, a bachelor's degree in nutrition, child development, or health education may substitute for the education and experience listed above.

Additional Qualifications: Incumbents must be willing to travel to clinic sites, and work evenings and weekends. Bilingual skills may be required for some positions. Possession of a California Class C Driver's License is required at time of appointment.

Knowledge of: nutrition principles and practices during infancy, childhood, pregnancy, and breast-feeding; health education methods and techniques; principles of human growth and development; the nutritional habits and cultural needs of program participants; interviewing/counseling techniques; group dynamics and human behavior; English usage and grammar; computer operations.

Ability to: conduct counseling sessions; learn the WIC rules and regulations; assess the status/needs of clients, make recommendations for improvement, and make appropriate referrals; establish and maintain working relationships with individuals from diverse socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds; interpret and explain program rules and regulations; maintain client confidentiality; write case notes; effectively communicate program information to a wide range of people; make group presentations and lead discussions; work independently.



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