Choosing an in home care agency for your aging loved one can be a challenge. Like any other type of investment or major purchase, it pays to do your research and compare options. Senior care is one of the fastest growing industries in the country, and there are large differences among competitors in the market.
This cheat sheet will help you identify how to find the right type of agency you want for your loved one.
8 Essentials When Choosing A Home Care Agency
- A current state license. Check into the licensing requirements for Home Care Organizations in your state to find out what they are and if the agency you are considering has a current and clean license.
- A complimentary assessment. This is professional courtesy and the mark of a good agency.
- Caregivers as W2 employees. It’s possible to work with agencies whose caregivers are independent contractors instead of W2 employees, but beware of the tax implications this will have. For more information, feel free to contact us.
- Personal interviews before placement. A reputable company will always encourage personal interviews with the caregivers before placing them with your loved one (whenever possible).
- Supervision by medical staff. This is important, especially if your loved one takes a lot of prescriptions. Are the caregivers supervised by professional medical staff?
- 24-hour on-call emergency line. Caregivers should be available for when it really matters.
- Personal references. Seek out personal references (the agency should be able to give you some) and/or online reviews of the agency to see what others have experienced.
- Pricing that fits your needs. If it is a franchise, they may not be as flexible with services and pricing as other privately owned companies.
In home care can make a huge difference in helping your loved one age in place successfully, but it is very important to find a good fit.
A revolving door of caregivers who come and go can be confusing and detrimental to an elder care situation. You want to be sure that the home care agency you partner with is going to do everything they can to ensure a qualified match and provide the support necessary to ensure success. Not only should the caregiver be professional, responsible, and compassionate, but the management should also be responsive and accessible. Take this into consideration when making your selection.
Here’s an infographic to share with friends and family!
About the Author: Pam Reynolds, CMC is the President and co-owner of Allegiance Aging Care Services. Pam has spent almost fifteen years working in senior care including long term care facilities and home health care. Her higher education is in Social Work, and she has been credentialed as both a certified Geriatric Care Manager and Licensed Assisted Living Administrator. Read more about Pam and her team of Aging Care Professionals here.