Whether you are a new home care agency or an established one, having a continual caregiver candidate pool is critical to long-term success. As such, it is important to consider a variety of options for finding a caregiver, including personal referrals and online reviews. However, these resources should be used with caution as they may not provide a complete picture of a potential caregiver’s skills or experience.
Before you search for a caregiver, you will need to determine the type and level of care your loved one needs. For example, a senior living alone who just wants companionship and assistance with errands will require different care than a dementia patient who requires medication and extensive daily supervision. Writing a caregiving job description will help you find the right person for your family’s unique situation.
When searching for a caregiver, you will need to decide whether to use an agency or hire on your own. The benefits of using an agency include the ability to perform background checks and verify credentials. Typically, agencies only employ qualified caregivers and can offer some assurance that your loved one is receiving high-quality care. However, the option to hire on your own provides greater flexibility and carries with it additional responsibilities. If you choose to hire an independent caregiver, you will be responsible for conducting all necessary safety checks, payroll taxes and withholdings, and filing paperwork. An accountant or tax attorney can help you navigate these responsibilities.
It is important to interview the potential caregivers carefully, just as you would with any other employee. This will give you a good idea of their skill set and personality. During the interview, ask about previous experience and be sure to ask for references from past employers. Also, ask how they feel about working with elderly patients, as this can be an important factor for some individuals.
You will also want to make a list of the types of tasks you are looking for and any special requests your loved one may have. For example, if your loved one has difficulty moving from bed to chair or has mobility issues, ask the candidate if they are familiar with stair lifts or wheelchairs. You will also want to make sure the person is comfortable with a variety of medical equipment and has an understanding of your loved one’s medications.
Lastly, be prepared for the possibility of theft or loss of items such as money and heirloom jewelry. Although rare, this can happen. To avoid this, lock up valuables and keep track of any cash or credit cards. If you are hiring through an agency, report any incidents to the company. Otherwise, speak to your loved one about storing away items and being careful not to leave them in plain sight. how to find a caregiver