Direct Support Professionals and Caregivers


As loved ones to our family members and loved ones needing disability care in Pennsylvania and elsewhere, chances are, you may have heard about and even considered hiring a caregiver in the form of a direct support professional (DSP) for them.

But did you know that DSPs and caregivers are not the same?

It is very important to make the distinction between them because both play a very distinct role such that hiring one over the other will have a significant effect on the well-being of our loved ones needing mental health care and/or disability support.

So how do DSPs differ from caregivers? As one of the community’s leading home healthcare agencies in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at Diversified Supportive Services, we have prepared a list to show these differences:

  • DSPs are trained to take on different complex roles
    Some of these roles include the functions of administrators, clinicians, managers, service coordinators, maintenance, and clerical personnel, among others.
  • DSPs adhere to a Code of Ethics and Core Competencies
    This means that DSPs are held to a validated standard and, as such, will work to foster an environment of trust, ethical behavior, and integrity; something that is particularly important in a situation that may be morally complex.
  • DSPs help individuals with disabilities do things for themselves
    Unlike caregiving where it is all about doing things so individuals would not have to, DSPs teach them to enable them to do things independently.

We hope this list helped! For more like these, please check back next time.

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