A successful caregiver relationship is built on trust and respect. When a caregiver comes to your home and helps with intimate activities, such a toileting, bathing, and dressing, or provides emotional care and support in the form of companionship, mutual trust and respect are essential.
To get a caregiving relationship started on the right foot, there are a few key questions to ask an agency before beginning personal care services:
- What background checks do you require for your caregivers?
To make sure you are working with a reputable home care agency, first check to see if it is licensed, bonded, and insured to provide home care in the state. Only work with agencies that can prove they meet all state-required licensing requirements.
Second, at a minimum, an agency’s caregivers should have to pass state criminal background checks to confirm there are no misdemeanors or felonies in their background, such as assault, theft, or burglary, that occurred in that state.
Exceptional agencies will go beyond the minimum and also require national criminal background checks to identify crimes committed in other states as well as conduct thorough employment and reference checks.
- What level of experience is required for your caregivers?
Caregiving is a skill, and it requires compassion, professionalism, good communication, and patience. Agencies that value caregiving will have hiring policies and practices that identify experienced caregivers who have a calling to do this work.
Making sure that the agency you are considering hires only caregivers with experience in this field and who demonstrate the necessary emotional aptitude will reap dividends for the caregiving relationship.
- Will the family and/or client be involved in developing the care plan?
A one-size-fits-all care plan is a recipe for failure. Exceptional home care agencies work with the client and/or their family to identify specific needs, match caregivers who are best qualified to meet those needs, and work together to achieve caregiving goals.
- How do you handle disagreements or miscommunications between a client and caregiver?
A caregiving relationship grounded in trust and respect prioritizes open and ongoing communication among the client, family, and caregiver. Clients should feel safe and comfortable voicing their needs and know how and with whom to raise concerns if their needs aren’t being met. Caregivers, too, should be supported if they have questions or concerns. Asking an agency about their dispute resolution process will indicate if they view the caregiving relationship as a transaction or as a long-term, collaborative partnership.
- How are caregivers supported in their work?
Caregivers who feel supported provide better care and service for their clients. Exceptional agencies will have “back of the house” supports for caregivers so they have the necessary resources and tools to appropriately manage stress or other difficult emotions that can result from working closely with those with serious illnesses or complex needs and to quickly have questions answered and concerns addressed.
If you or a loved one are ready to explore how home care can be of service, get started on a free home care quote or call us at (214) 377-0711 today. We hold our caregivers to the highest standard because our clients deserve the highest standard. Our caregivers must pass both federal and state criminal background checks, drug tests, and employment and reference checks. They also must complete our proprietary training program. Each one also has a minimum of two years of direct caregiving experience. Home Care Book is also the only home care agency with an on staff chief medical officer who supports our caregivers and clients.