Choosing the Right Caregiver

One of the benefits of modern medicine is increased life expectancy. As the American population ages, there are millions of older Americans who are no longer able to take care of themselves, and yet are still independent enough to continue living at home provided they have some help with the basic tasks like cooking, light housekeeping, laundry, remembering to take medications, and getting to appointments.
Most loving families do their best to cover the additional care needs but can become overwhelmed when those needs crowd into already busy schedules.

In-home care is a great option for aging loved ones who want to stay at home and for the family members who find it difficult to meet all their needs. The most important thing is choosing a reputable caregiver who is reliable, trustworthy, compassionate, and over time feels more like family.

How do you find such a caregiver? Before you start interviewing home care agencies, it is a good idea to consider exactly what services your loved one needs. A good place to start is to take your loved one to visit his or her doctor for a full examination. If there is a geriatric counselor available, you should have a consultation as well. These professionals can give guidance on typical care needs and address any health issues with your loved one.

Make a list of the daily and weekly tasks that you and your family have been providing for your loved one and approximately how long these tasks take. Does your loved one only need companionship or a combination of companionship with personal care and housekeeping services? Would you also like your in-home caregiver to drive your loved one to appointments or grocery shopping? If so, add that to your list. Once you have a list of duties for your in-home caregiver, block it into a weekly schedule that reflects your loved one’s current schedule. This will be a great resource to have when our staff arrives.  She will work with you to create your individual care plan carried out by your caregiver.

Now that you have a good idea of what care your loved one needs, contact at least three in-home care pagencies to schedule interviews. In addition to going over your schedule of care needs, ask about pre-employment screening; as well as how much experience and training their caregivers have. Find out what their process is when the caregiver is going to be late or absent.

How does the potential caregiver speak to your loved one? Does he or she show respect by using your loved one’s surname? Is there warmth and compassion in the introduction? Does the caregiver show interest in the person with whom he or she will be spending time? Does the in-home agency have written privacy and confidentiality policies?

Even if you feel great about your consultation with Home-Aid Caregivers, Ltd., we suggest that you still interview two or more other agencies to get comparison of the different agencies to see if a large corporation or an established, local family owned business is right for you. Taking the time to explore many possibilities will more likely result in a happy, long-lasting relationship between the caregiver, your loved one, and your family.

Our home care services are also available in hospitals, rehab centers, skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities, and congregate living facilities. When you are ready to schedule a free in-home consultation, please call Home-Aid Caregivers, Ltd. at (903) 533-1300.