When the time comes that a senior’s health, safety and wellbeing could be improved with a little extra care, companionship or assistance, taking that first step can be overwhelming. The good news is that there are a wealth of alternatives to assisted living, so your loved one can receive the care and attention he or she needs from the comfort of home. But, with so many in-home care options available, where do you begin?
A little upfront preparation can go a long way towards reducing the time, stress, and frustration that can come from blindly cold-calling home care prospects. Home Matters suggests putting together a concise checklist of items that are important considerations for your senior loved one’s care, allowing you to more quickly determine which home care agency is likely to be the best fit.
The following questions will provide you with a starting point, and you can add anything that is specific to your loved one’s needs and desires:
- Is your agency licensed?
- How long have you been in business?
- Do you require a minimum number of hours of service?
- Is someone available to answer my questions 24/7, including holidays?
- Are you locally owned and operated?
- Are your caregivers hired employees (with taxes, insurance, worker’s comp, etc. covered)?
- Are your caregivers screened and background-checked?
- Is ongoing training provided for caregivers?
- Do you provide a replacement if my caregiver is sick or on vacation?
- What happens if we would prefer a different caregiver than the one assigned?
- Do you provide a free assessment prior to committing to care services?
- Is a care plan provided, and is it updated regularly?
- Do you provide transportation?
- Is there a nurse on staff?
- Do you offer specialized care for specific conditions, such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, diabetes, congestive heart failure, etc.?
Keep in mind that home care costs can vary widely from one provider to another, and it’s important to understand the differences in what those costs cover.
Although it may seem prudent to select a caregiver based on a newspaper ad promising “low rates,” in reality, the ultimate price you may end up paying could be devastating – either financially, if that caregiver becomes injured on the job and suddenly it’s YOUR responsibility to cover medical expenses, lost wages, taxes and worker’s comp, etc. – or, emotionally or even physically, if the person has not been background checked and places your loved one at risk for harm.
To learn more about selecting the most reliable, safe, appropriate caregiver for a beloved senior in your life, contact the professional in-home care experts . We’d love to talk with you about how our senior care team in Phoenix, Tucson, Scottsdale as well as Sun City West can improve your loved one’s quality of life, allowing him or her to age safely and comfortably at home.