When you want your elderly loved one to stay at home instead of an institution or facility and there’s no one in the household who can actually assist or provide care, then you must consider hiring a personal “carer” (Sitter, Companion, Aide or Nurse) who can stay at home with the senior citizen or “caree.” A lot of people now choose home care over institutions or nursing homes because of its numerous advantages on both the caree and the family members. In most cases, home care is preferred by families who have the means of paying for private caregiving service and also those who aim to upgrade basic care. In fact, studies are consistently showing that individuals enjoy a higher quality of life at home, but also that it is less expensive to remain at home with private duty in-home care than a nursing home.

But then again, when one opts for home care, what are the things that should be taken into consideration?

It’s not very easy to hire someone to care for a family member. Though there is a chance that close relatives are available to help, in most cases caregivers come from home care agencies or may also be individuals who are actually strangers to the families who hire them. And since these care providers are strangers, it comes to a point when trusting becomes very difficult not only for the family members but also to the patient as well.

Below is a list of some of the fundamentals when hiring a home care provider. These can be applied whether the caregiver comes from an agency or just an individual who wishes to apply for the job.

  • Determine the kind of help needed

Aside from the fact that skilled caregivers have higher salary rates, knowing what the tasks are should help you compare and choose among a list of potential caregivers depending on skill, salary rate and many other things.

  • Background check

It is necessary to know some background information about the agency where the caregiver came from, previous work records or references. It is important to know what kind of background checks the agency performs on each caregiver. Is it a local county check, state, or even nation-wide?

  •  Specifying the tasks

To prevent issues, you should be able to discuss with the caregiver what his or her tasks are before the employment starts. That way, everything should be clear right from the start.

  •  Monitoring of the caregiver

It’s not enough to sit back and relax while another person cares for your senior. Regular monitoring is a must to ensure that all the tasks are done and to know the condition of the patient.

  •  Emergency Anticipation

Make sure to provide emergency phone numbers to the caregiver. Also make a list of “To-Do’s” in case of any emergency.

Of course this just begins to touch the surface of hiring a caregiver for in-home care for an elderly loved one. Many families choose to secure the services of a home care agency to assist with finding, screening, and coordinating caregivers.

Most of all, it is important to make certain that all individuals and organizations who have a role in caring for an elderly senior citizen truly have the best interests of the senior at heart. While this can be difficult to determine, references can help you get a feel for the person or organization.

So whether you choose to utlize the services of a sitter, companion, certified nursing assistant, aide, or nurse be sure to check those references! It can be very time-consuming to do, but well worth it.