Most families do not consider in-home care for a loved one until something severe occurs, such as a fall, a stroke, or another serious injury or condition. In a time of crisis, families may rush into a relationship with the first available care provider, who may or may not be able to fully meet their wishes and needs. In such a case, one must take time and look for the best quality home care agency.
It takes time, research, and conversations about your loved one’s home care preferences to choose the top-quality home care agency for them.
Below are the tips to narrow down your possibilities and discover the top-quality home care agency for your loved one
Do Proper Research
It’s no wonder that most people turn to the internet first when they need information on top-quality home care agency. But before you do that, you and your loved one should talk about how much care they’ll need to stay at home safely. Do they simply require assistance with household tasks or grocery shopping? Or do they require more advanced assistance, such as assistance with showering or taking medications? Once you know what kind of care you need, a search for key phrases might lead you to a trustworthy, quality home care agency. These could include the following
- Care at home
- Nursing assistance
- Personal attention
- Alzheimer’s and dementia treatment
- Transportation for Seniors
Unfortunately, it isn’t as simple as clicking on the first link in the search results. The first quality home care agency on the list isn’t always the greatest option for your loved one. Get some names and basic information from online search results, but delve deeper to get the truly essential insights you’ll need. Award badges and seals of approval on company websites should not be overlooked because they can indicate that the provider is doing something right and going above and beyond to deliver exceptional service to their customers.
The Better Business Bureau is one online resource for further information (BBB). The Better Business Bureau’s website provides basic information about local businesses as well as customer reviews and complaints. Of course, each client’s experience is unique, but frequent or unresolved complaints about similar issues could indicate a problem with an agency’s quality. This indicates a low-quality home care agency.
Take Advice From Others
When it comes to locating a reputable home health care organization, a personal reference goes a long way. Request recommendations from your extended family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers. They may know someone who needs in-home care, or they may have arranged for care for a loved one.
In addition, I recommend seeking guidance from medical professionals regarding quality home care agency. Request recommendations from your doctor, your loved one’s doctor, nurses, and others in the industry. Do they refer people to specific home health aides? If you come across a few agencies during your study, ask your medical professionals for their thoughts on them.
Don’t forget to look into community resources in your area, such as your local Agency on Aging. These organizations assist senior citizens and their families in locating in-home care and other services in their communities. The Eldercare Locator from the US Administration on Aging can assist you in locating services in your area. Your local senior center may also be able to make referrals for care providers.
If your loved one has a specific medical condition, such as Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), or Parkinson’s disease, it may be beneficial to seek advice from organizations that specialize in that field. The following are some examples of associations specialized to specific illnesses:
- Alzheimer’s Association (Alzheimer’s Association)
- The National Multiple Sclerosis Society (NMSS) is a non-profit organization
- The American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) is a non-profit
These organizations may not provide specific referrals, but they can provide information on where to begin or questions to ask agencies about caring for someone with a particular illness.
Conduct interviews with your Top Choices
It’s time to start making phone calls and setting up in-person interviews once you’ve reduced your options down to the top three or four agencies. This allows you another opportunity, similar to a job interview, to determine which provider is the greatest fit before you hire them.
In our Home Care Planning Guide, we’ve included a list of possible interview questions to ask quality home care agencies. In addition, I recommend contrasting the responses of agencies to queries such as the following
- Are the quality home care agencies new or have they worked with others before you hired them?
- Do you conduct background checks on your providers, verify their credentials, and conduct drug tests on them?
- How do you prepare caretakers and assess their abilities?
- How will you ensure that the caregiver is a good match for my family member?
- Will my loved one has a steady caretaker, or will there be a lot of people coming and going?
- Who will be in charge of my loved one’s care from your caregivers?
The quality home care agency should ideally be overseen by a trained expert. M&Y Care LLC has a registered nurse on staff who provides this oversight at no extra cost. Although there are Quality home care agencies with lovely, cheerful caregivers, no trained professional from the agency ever follow up on the care provided. That is unacceptable to me. Next, check to see if the company is authorized to provide in-home care in your state. In most states, in-home care professionals are required to be licensed. For any complaints regarding the home health care agency, as well as inspection results, contact the state board or organization that licenses home care providers in your state. The public can find this information online or by calling the licensing organization.
If you inquire, most reputable organizations will be able to offer you client references. While I don’t believe it’s necessary, it can be a valuable source of additional information from someone who has walked in your footsteps. If you contact a client reference, inquire about the benefits and drawbacks of working with that agency. Have they been happy with the responses they’ve received from the agency when they’ve had questions? Have any of their issues been addressed quickly?
It’s a huge decision to pick the best quality home care agency. Take your time to look into your alternatives. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, ask questions and get more information. Make certain that the service you select will give the amount of care that your loved one requires. We’d be pleased to talk with you about your in-home care alternatives. For additional information, visit our website or contact us via email.