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What You Should Look For When Choosing a Home Care Provider
June 19, 2017 by Living Assistance Services - Senior Home Care
Most home care organizations do their best to project a positive image to potential clients and will claim that they provide quality caregivers who are reliable and sensitive to your needs. The best way to ensure that you find the right match is to ask specific questions about how they operate.
Here is a checklist of what to look for and what to look out for.
Can You Choose Your Own Caregiver
We pride ourselves in being one of the few agencies which actively encourages clients to choose their own caregiver. Beware of agencies which only assign you anyone who is available.
Qualified and Experienced Caregivers
Make sure the agency hires only qualified and experienced caregivers who possess a community college Personal Support Worker certificate or equivalent. Beware of agencies that rely solely on their own training programs.
Ask how the agency hires its caregivers. If they don’t conduct extensive background checks, talk to references, screen their candidates for personality traits and interview them at least twice, your loved one may be put at risk. Personality traits, such as reliability and a caring disposition, can make or break the relationship between caregiver and care recipient.
Agency Track Record
Reputable home care agencies pay their caregivers fairly and provide them with the statutory benefits, at a minimum. All workers should be fully insured and covered under the Workers’ Compensation Board. Be sure to ask for a copy of a valid Workers Compensation Clearance Certificate.
How Do they Monitor their Caregivers
Enquire how the agency monitors its caregivers. Careful and continuous monitoring ensures that appropriate action can be taken immediately if needed. Ask if they have a Registered Nurse (RN) on staff.
Flexible Live-in or Live-out Services 24/7
The requirements of care recipients typically change over time, even day-to-day or week-to-week, depending upon needs and the availability of family members. Therefore, it’s vital that the agency be flexible and able to provide either live-in or live-out service, for whatever periods are needed. Ask if your agency provides service on a 24×7 basis.
Flexibility may also be required in the locations where care is provided: at home, in a retirement residence or in a hospital. Some agencies do not provide these options and elderly care situations and locations can change.
Do they have Liability and Dishonesty Insurance
Be sure your care provider has liability and dishonesty insurance with a limit of at least two million dollars. This is required to protect the care recipient and their family. The agency should supply proof of insurance by giving you an insurance certificate.
Timeliness and Responsiveness
Finally, time is often of the essence because you need home care assistance immediately. Agencies differ considerably in their ability to respond. Some only need a few hours while others need days. Ask to ensure your needs will be addressed on a timely basis.
Living Assistance Services – Home Care