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Unlicensed assistive personnel (UAP) is a class of paraprofessionals who assist individuals with physical disabilities, mental impairments, and other health care needs with their activities of daily living (ADLs). UAPs also provide bedside care—including basic nursing procedures—all under the supervision of a registered nurse, licensed practical nurse or other health care professional. UAPs must demonstrate their abilities and competencies before gaining any expanded responsibilities within the clinical setting. While providing this care, UAPs offer compassion and patience and are part of the patient’s healthcare support system. Communication is key between UAPs and Registered Nurses (RN) as they are working together in the best interests of the patient.
They provide care for patients in hospitals, residents of nursing facilities, clients in private homes, and others in need of their services due to effects of old age or disability. UAPs, by definition, do not hold a license or other mandatory professional requirements for practice, though many hold various certifications. They are collectively categorized under the group “personal care workers in health services” in the International Standard Classification of Occupations, 2008 revision.