Monday, December 01, 2008

Tips and Hints for Choosing In-Home Care Services

• Be Organized. Develop a summary of information about the care needs of your loved one that you want the caregiver to be aware of. Also, when searching for a service provider, draw up a list of questions to ask the agency.
• Ask the Home Care Agency if they have a back-up person on-call in case of caregivers becoming ill, or not showing up.
• Provide the aide with a checklist of duties for EACH DAY.
• The aide should not sleep, or smoke in your home.
• If there is a problem, immediately contact the agency that sent the aide.
• The aides should provide their own lunch/dinner.
• Do not tip. No money should be exchanged with the home health aide
• Do not send your loved one out in a car with the aide unless this situation is prearranged with the agency. Be sure the agency completes driver record checks on all employees.
• Aides should not use the phone for lots of personal calls.
• Make sure you know in advance how payment is expected.
• Some aides are Certified Nurse’s Aides (CNAs) and others are not. Some will take a blood pressure and a pulse, others will not. Ask the agency.
• There should be some consistency after about 1 to 2 weeks regarding the person who is sent to the home. Sometimes it takes a week or so to get the same person on the schedule for your home. Be patient!
• What is the hiring practice of the agency? Have background checks been performed on every caregiver? What about Elder Abuse or Child Abuse database checks? Are they
bonded and insured?
• If there are too many late shows/no shows or inconsistencies, CHANGE AGENCIES (speak to them about the problem first, perhaps they can correct the situation).