Six Questions to Ask Yourself When Hiring a Home Care Aide

When you’ve spent most of your life around someone, it’s not always easy to watch that transition into old age. Elderly woman with home care aideNothing illustrates that point more than sitting down and deciding to enlist the services of a home care agency or registry. Whether you need a home care aide to check up on your loved one while you’re at work or you need someone available every day, you don’t want just anyone doing the job.

What should you be on the lookout for? How will you know that you’ve found the right agency or registry? Are there any key factors you should be following up on?

Here are the top 6 questions that everyone hiring a home care aide needs to ask before signing the dotted line.

Vetting the Home Care Agency or Registry

If you’re going through an agency or registry, it’s important to first make sure that you’re dealing with a legitimate company. These are the basic issues that you need to have sorted out before you can go any further with the hire.

1. Is the Agency or Registry Accredited?

People don’t always realize this when talking to agencies that provide home care for the elderly, but there are agencies around that evaluate the services health care-related companies offer. An agency or registry that has been evaluated and then accredited by a credible outside organization has more credibility working in its favor.

In addition, there are also health and safety guidelines that have been established federally through Medicare. How does the agency or registry stack up there?

2. What About Licensing?

This is an issue that’ll vary from state to state. However, the vast majority of states will have stipulated rules that ensure agencies undergo review on a consistent basis. If your state is one of them, you might be able to verify what you’re being told by requesting those official reviews.

If your agency or registry doesn’t meet state guidelines or you find out that the reality is different from what you’ve been told, that’s a major red flag. Before you start booking appointments, you definitely want to read up on your state’s requirements.

3. Can You Find References?

It doesn’t matter if you’re getting your hair done or choosing a babysitter. There’s no beating a word of mouth association. In a way, health care is no different. So ask the agency or registry references. If you’re having second thoughts about hiring a home care aide for your elderly loved one, perhaps sitting down with a doctor or hospital administrator will ease your mind.

You can also get a list from your doctor and work from there ahead of time

4. Does the Agency or Registry Train Its Aides Well? Are there ways of helping them improve?

Of course, these precautions are being taken so that you can hire a home care aide at the end of the day. So naturally, it’s important that you get an inside look at how the agency or registry hires its aides as well as the way staff members are handled on a daily basis. Do supervisors stay closely involved at the place? Do staff members get regular opportunities to update their credentials?

The internal structure and motivation of an agency or registry can tell you a lot.

Choosing Your Aide

Maybe on top of exploring agencies you’re open to browsing through your local registry for your home care professional. That’s not a problem either. There are a couple of things to be asking once you’ve got an aide in mind.

1. Is This Home Care Aide Certified?

There are a number of services that fall under the umbrella of “home care”. These range from providing simple human companionship and adult conversation to catering to a patient’s dietary needs to managing medication and helping out with basic chores. In short, just because someone is a home care aide that doesn’t mean that their professional strengths will be right for your situation.

2. What Type of Personality Does the Home Care Aide Have?

The last thing you want is to be dealing with a home care professional who rubs you the wrong way. Are you comfortable with this aide? How does he or she speak of senior citizens? Granted, it’s going on gut instinct and we all know that gut instincts can be wrong. Even so, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

There you have it. These simple questions will save you time and heartache in your search for a home care aide. Good luck.,

In South Florida you can save time by requesting an in-home visit from Boca Home Care Services, which services most cities on Broward and Palm Beach Counties , or Jewish Home Care Services of Miami-Dade which handles areas South.

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