In-home care refers to services that are given inside the home instead of a care facility or hospital. There are a lot of home care providers, and you can easily find an in-home care provider near you. A great way to ensure that your loved one is safely taken care of is to choose the home care provider carefully.
Here are the factors that you need to consider in choosing an in-home care provider.
- Individual or agency
The first step is to decide the kind of in-home care to use. Some people are of the opinion that hiring from a home care agency is best, while for others, an individual provider will do. While either choice comes with both advantages and disadvantages, it’s important to consider the needs of your loved one in choosing which kind to use.
- An in-home care agency is a business that is licensed to employ care providers and send them over to the home of a patient to provide care services. This option can provide both medical care such as injections, vital signs monitoring, or wound care. They can also provide non-medical care such as bathing, meal preparation, shopping or housework.
- An independent or private caregiver is hired directly by a family. This choice can also provide medical care to patients if the chosen caregiver is trained to do so, but only rarely.
- Care needs
Before looking for potential health care providers, it is best to make a list of what you or your loved one needs, such as toileting, meal preparation, bathing. Consider if you will need medical care for your family member, or you simply need assistance in their daily activities such as walking to the park or buying groceries. Your list should also include your expectations on how the needs will be provided.
Another thing to consider is how often you will need help at home. You can hire support on a live-in, weekly, daily, or hourly basis. To determine the level of help you need in taking care of your loved one, consider the following:
- Nature and extent of your loved one’s needs
- Your availability to give similar services
It is more than likely that you know someone who has encountered a similar situation before, and their recommendations about which in-home care provider to choose will factor in to your decision-making since they have previous experience about the matter. Here’s what you can do:
- Ask for recommendations beginning with your friends and family.
- You may also seek referrals from health care providers, such as nurses, doctors, and social workers.
- Contact church members, colleagues, support groups, or browse local newspapers.
- Additionally, you can look for in-home care services online and search for reviews.
After narrowing down the list of providers, the next stage is to screen them. Follow these steps.
- Before inviting providers for an interview, check the type of services they are offering and if it suits your needs.
- Meet with the potential home care provider at home.
- Prepare the necessary questions to help you pinpoint the provider you want.
- It’s highly recommended to have another person with you during the interview so that you have someone to discuss your impressions with.
Agencies usually do criminal background checks on their providers. Determine if these were done. If they have not checked their employee’s references, now is a good time to talk to people who have worked with your prospect. If you are looking at getting an individual or private caregiver, make sure that you also thoroughly check in with their references since they don’t have an agency that would give them a background check. Checking the references of a candidate is crucial in determining performance history. Request a list of recent people they have worked with who are not immediate family members and are available to answer calls. Some questions to ask the references will include the following:
- How long did this employee work for you?
- What responsibilities did this employee perform?
- Why did this person leave?
- Were you happy with their job performance?
- Can you describe one of the great things they used to do with your loved one?
- Do you feel that this person was happy while doing their job?
Finding a reliable in-home care provider is crucial in ensuring the safety of your loved one. Additionally, you can try describing what makes up a typical day for you and your loved one. Ask about how they will handle the possible problems that will rise. Ensure that you’ll have regular discussions and create a good relationship with the care provider.