When it is time to get some help with home care for an aging parent or other loved one finding and selecting a good reputable agency is important. How can you judge the qualities that an excellent agency will provide? What are some of the qualities you want a caregiver for your parent to have? Here are some qualities of an excellent home care agency.
- Employee Retention: A high turnover rate among the agency employees may indicate several problems. The agency requires too many hours, the agency doesn’t pay well, and/or they treat their employees poorly. An excellent agency will have long-term employees, because the caregivers actually like their job. The caregivers are satisfied with working hours, pay, and benefits.
- How Much Health Care Training does the Caregivers Have: An excellent agency will ensure that all the caregivers have basic medical skills. At the very least, they should have training in CPR, and should be able to identify developing problems with breathing and nutrition.
- The agency should be bonded and insured. Many states require that home health care providers carry some sort of liability insurance. They should also hire employees that are bondable to ensure there won’t be any criminal activity.
- Can the agency provide specialized care if necessary immediately, or in the future? Good home health care agencies will be able to provide caregivers that specialize in working with people with diseases like Alzheimer’s, or dementia.
- Know what skills the caregiver can provide. If the job is going to require some physical lifting you need to make sure the caregiver is up to the task. If the patient needs help with eating, personal hygiene, bathing and dressing, or has mobility problems, the caregiver must have competence in all the potential assistance required.
- An excellent agency should be able to provide a substitute, if the regular caregiver is unavailable for some reason. If an agency can’t provide a substitute immediately, you may have a real problem if you are out of town, or indisposed in some other way.
- If your parent or loved one is unhappy with a caregiver, the home care agency should be able to replace them without cause. You don’t necessarily want to offend someone and/or hurt their feelings by giving a reason you want them replaced.
- How are the caregivers supervised? Quality home care agencies usually have a mix of phone interviews, and onsite evaluations. Phone interviews can leave a lot of information from the overall picture.
- How long the agency has been in business is important to determine how much experience they have and how many references they can provide. While a new agency doesn’t necessarily mean the caregivers don’t have extensive experience it may take some more work to find out about the caregiver candidates.
- What hours are the caregivers available to work? This is an important question to determine how this fits into your schedule. Unless you are requesting odd, or very long hours an agency should be able to accommodate you.
Having a stranger in the house can be very scary for senior parents. The home care agency should be able to let a caregiver meet the person they will be caring for with you in attendance as well.
For more information about home care services in Fenton MO, contact Senior Services Unlimited. We are an elder care agency providing affordable and respectful home care to couples, veterans, and the disabled. call (314) 646-8131