When looking for some help at home it can be hard to know where to start and what to keep an eye out for. Contracting with a home health care agency can be a scary ordeal for many seniors and a confusing process for people trying to find help for their loved ones. Here are some tips and ideas to help in the process:
Before You Begin Your Search:
1. Make a list of things that are absolute “needs”. This list should include qualities and services that you absolutely will not budge on. For example, if you know you need a CNA and not an unlicensed companion put that on the list. Also, if you know that you/your loved one is dealing with a disease or disability and you do not want anyone who is not experienced with that specific disability to be considered, put that on the list. These are things that are necessary for the well being of the person receiving care.
2. Make a list of things you would prefer, but do not necessarily need from the caregiver. These can be things like a certain amount of experience (ex. 10 years), a care taker with the same interests, etc. that you would like to find, but can live without.
3. Decide on a schedule. How many hours? What days? Any nights or weekends? Do you want one full-time care giver or a few part time care givers?
4. Decide on a realistic budget. Sit down and figure out what you can comfortably afford without having to give anything up or make too many financial accommodations for.
5. Come up with a list of interview questions for the company as well as for the individual who is assigned to you. Make sure you ask about anything that is important to you, no matter how awkward the question may be. This is the best way to make sure that you and everyone else are on the same page and can work comfortably together to ensure you get the best care experience possible.
When you are ready to begin your search:
1. Ask friends and family for their recommendations or experiences. Find out what people in your circle can tell you about different local companies. Ask people who know you personally and know what may or may not be right for you.
2. Ask your doctor or specialists if they have any recommendations. They may know a specific group that has experience with a disease or disability you may have.
3. Do your own research. Call different companies, conduct interviews, read customer testimonials, search online for complaints about the company as well as the typical review. Do not worry about bothering anyone with your research. If they want you as a client, they will be interested in what you need and what you expect from them.
When it comes time to hire:
1. Communication is key. Make sure that everyone is on the same page and there is no room for misunderstanding.
2. Do not sign if you are not confident in your decision. Do not allow a company to pressure or bully you into signing with them. Make your own choice in your own time.