When a loved one’s health begins to fail or they’ve suffered a recent illness/injury that has diminished their abilities, the most common reaction is to take on the role of caregiver. Even with friends and family helping, this can still be a daunting task for many people who are forced to balance caring for their loved one, their personal life, and job.
In 2015 alone, there were approximately 34.2 million Americans providing unpaid care to an adult age 50 or over—and less than 20% of those interviewed reported being caregivers. That means millions of people providing care for others aren’t licensed or certified, which means they likely faced or will face a number of challenges in their pursuit to care for another.
While it’s still certainly viable to take part in someone’s personal care, hiring a professional caregiver can be key in a successful homecare plan.
Starting the conversation
Merely suggesting bringing in outside help might be met with some resistance, simply because people may feel uncomfortable having a stranger take care of their personal needs or they’re afraid of losing their independence. Tapping into the resources of a professional caregiver will not only support your own caregiving efforts, but help you avoid things like caregiver burnout.
There are countless resources today that allow current ad-hoc caregivers and those they care for to research and find the caregiver or homecare service that best suits their needs.
At MediQuest Staffing, our caregivers consist of registered nurses (RNs), licensed practical nurses (LPNs), and certified nursing assistants (CNAs). For MediQuest, below is a breakdown of the services we can provide, and the caregivers qualified to handle them.
RNs & LPNs
- Respite care
- Private duty care
- Diabetic monitoring
- Administration of medication and treatments as prescribe by a physician
- Post hospitalization care to monitor client’s medical condition
- Support to patients under Hospice care
- Care management (1-hour visits by a licensed staff member to provide specialized care services)
- Hospice support
- Respite care
- Dementia care
- Personal care / Bathing
- Assistance with daily living/activities
- Shopping / Laundry
- Appointment transport
- Companion services
- Medication reminders
- Meal preparation
- Light housekeeping
These breakdowns are helpful if you’re looking for a specific kind of homecare service, either to supplement your own efforts or to make up for what you don’t know how to do as a caregiver.
What to look for in a homecare service provider
Some of the first things you’ll want to do after figuring out which homecare service your loved one requires, is the qualifications of the homecare provider. You’ll want to find out how long they’ve been in business; if they’re a part of professional organizations; and what standards they require in their caregivers. Questions about certifications, education, and experience are also good ways to determine whether a caregiver is truly qualified. A qualified homecare provider will be:
- Covered by malpractice, liability, and workers compensation insurance
You can also inquire as to how the company supervises its caregivers and what kind of quality assurance they provide to ensure the best experience and you will want to find out whether the homecare provider offers flexibility in the time you require the help of a caregiver. Some people may only need help for a few hours each day, while some might need around-the-clock assistance, depending on their health and condition.
The source of your homecare service is just as important as the service itself. It’s wise to make sure that both you and your loved one are happy with the one supplementing your care, and that they’re qualified to handle the aspects you need the most help with.
As part of our own vetting process, our caregivers are chosen based on their certifications, qualifications, drug screenings, and background checks; and we ensure that any caregiver we staff has at least one year of experience in a hospital or other long-term care facility before they’re hired. The background check we perform includes a criminal history check through the Inspector General and the PA State Police. Any prospective employees who have not resided in the state of Pennsylvania for the last two consecutive years also undergo FBI fingerprinting.
In addition to the above requirements, applicants’ qualifications are evaluated through the following:
- Personal interview
- Work reference check
- Written exam to test their skills and knowledge
Our hiring process ensures that our clients receive the highest quality of care. When you choose us as your home care agency, we want you to have the peace of mind knowing that the caregivers we send to you are skilled, safe, and capable of handling the tasks involved with private duty home care.
Contact us to get started!
Whether you know what homecare services are needed or are still unsure, we can help determine the specific homecare services that best suit your needs. Our nursing supervisor will visit your home and talk with you to develop a personalized care plan. Our goal is to keep your loved ones in the comfort of their own home, surrounded by their favorite things and special memories.