The last few times you were over at your aging mother’s home something just didn’t seem right. She looked disheveled, the fridge was empty, and the place was a mess. Now you’re staying up at night worrying about your mom’s health and wellbeing. Since your mother has always been quite vocal about remaining at home for as long as possible, she would probably agree to some professional home care. Here’s how to select the right home care agency so that mom’s needs are met and her wishes respected.
Compile a Home Care Agency List
Start your search by compiling a list of home care agencies in the area. Sometimes the best referrals come from coworkers, friends, family members, or neighbors. Ask those trusted sources if they know of any good home care providers that they’ve used or are using.
Church or synagogue leaders are also good referral sources, along with doctors and other healthcare professionals that work with the elderly. You can also obtain agency names through elder care resources like your local Area Agency on Aging, the national Eldercare Locator, or by contacting senior centers.
Screen the Home Care Providers
Use this process to narrow down your agency list:
Types of services offered
Hiring someone to handle grocery shopping or laundry is quite different from hands-on or live-in care. Does your loved one have dementia? Is their mobility limited? Focus on agencies that can only provide the level of care that your senior needs.
Are they licensed and insured?
Licensed home care agencies must meet stringent state and federal guidelines. The more reputable ones are also insured so that your family will be protected if something unfortunate were to happen.
If a person you didn’t know was going to be in your home, you’d want to know about their background first. Narrow your agency search down by only including the ones that conduct criminal and driving background checks before hiring their employees.
Look for agencies that provide ongoing staff training. In addition, they should require their caregivers to stay updated on the latest health precautions and care protocols.
Because emergencies like natural disasters happen, be sure that the agency has a continuity of care plan so that your loved one will continue to receive the attention they need. Does the agency use technologies like video chat services to stay connected with clients when their caregivers can’t physically be there?
Reputable home care agencies usually have RN case managers on call 24/7 that supervise staff members and answer questions that family members might have.
Find out how and how often the agency would communicate information about your loved one’s status to you and other family members- whether it’s by email, phone, or another method.
Cost of care
Also look into how much the agency charges for their services, and whether those costs fit within your family’s budget. Most agencies offer flexible care programs and charge by the hour if that’s your preference.
Check their online reputation
Next, Google each agency and see what others have to say about the quality of their services. Look for client testimonials on their website, along with any awards or certifications that they’ve earned.
You’re almost done!
Once you’ve narrowed your search down to two or three agencies schedule a time for you both to sit down and meet with a supervisor and potential caregiver. During that face-to-face meeting, you’ll have a chance to see if the caregiver’s personality meshes well with that of your loved one.
We’ve Done Most of the Groundwork for You
Choosing the best home care agency for your loved one can be challenging and stressful. However, we’ve already done most of the work for you. As a fully licensed and insured home care agency all our professional caregivers are well trained and thoroughly screened in advance. Our client testimonials speak for themselves, and we offer flexible and affordable home care packages that accommodate most budgets.
Our full menu of family trusted services includes personal care, companionship care, household duties, transportation, medication reminders, and even 24-hour and live-in care. With a goal of maintaining your loved one’s quality of life, our agency’s mission is helping seniors age comfortably and safely in place right where they want to be. To learn more about us, or to schedule a FREE in-home assessment for a senior in our service area today, please call or visit us online!