How Do I Find the Right Home Help Provider?
You should consider the following when finding a home help provider:
- The types of home help
- Vetting the carer
- Their skills
- Local Authority assessment
- Arranging a live-in care trial
If your elderly loved one is in need of care, you should make sure that the person you employ to care for them is honest and trustworthy and has the necessary skills to perform their required tasks appropriately and professionally.
Why choose care in the home?
The residential care home model is becoming less and less popular due to the increasing awareness around live-in care. The tradition of children caring for their relatives themselves is fading away. With a lot of couples both working full-time, most families lack the time and resources to fulfil this role.
Live-in care provides a viable alternative to the residential care home, allowing older people to remain in their own much-loved and familiar surroundings while receiving the care and assistance needed to remain independent.
Types of home help
If you feel that your elderly loved one is struggling to cope alone, or with their partner, you can arrange for your local authority to assess their needs. Someone from the authority will visit your loved one’s home and ascertain the type of help that they would benefit from, along with a raft of suggestions for alterations needed to make the home more suitable for their needs.
Once you have a care assessment in place, your loved one will be issued with a care plan, detailing the type of help available, along with details of any grants that could be made available to assist with care, or changes to the fabric of the home, such as bathing aids and handrails.
Local authorities can supply home help, but with local services, so overstretched, any help is likely to be minimal. It’s important to note that any financial assistance offered to help with caregiver fees doesn’t have to be spent on local authority care, and you can use it to source private care if you choose.
Private carers can offer an extensive array of services, including 24-hour live-in care, where the caregiver moves into your loved one’s home, living as part of the extended family, and providing one-to-one care whenever it is needed. This type of care is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative to residential care.
Dulcie’s Care Story
In this short video, Mary and Colin explain how Dulcie’s live-in Elder carer, Sarah, has become part of the family.
They discuss how live-in care has allowed Dulcie to stay independent in her own home, while making a new friend at the same time.
How to choose a care provider
You can source your own caregiver, but it’s important to arrange a suitable vetting procedure to ensure the safety and well-being of your elderly loved one. You need to make sure that prospective candidates have good-quality and checkable references, along with details of qualifications attained.
Caring is a compassionate vocation, but anyone you employ needs to be able to provide evidence that that they have worked in this field before, along with proof of good character. Always check through a candidate’s CV and career history very thoroughly, and make sure that they have a current DBS certificate.
Elderly care at home usually requires the caregiver to be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so the work is intensive. Discuss your candidate’s holiday requirements to make sure that everyone is in agreement about time off.
You should also ensure that you discuss your elderly loved one’s care needs honestly, to make sure that the carer understands exactly what is required of them. By its nature, elderly care involves needs that change over time, usually becoming increasingly complex, particularly if dementia care is part of the caregiver’s remit.
Don’t try to underplay your loved one’s condition, as this could compromise the caregiver’s ability to provide appropriate care. Always arrange a trial period initially, before entering into a binding contract. The caregiver may have good references and an impeccable work history, but if your loved one doesn’t ‘gel’ with them, then a bond probably won’t form.
Consult an agency
A simpler solution is to approach an organisation such as Elder, which specialises in providing live-in care for older people. Whether your loved one is in need of companion care, dementia care, or something in between, Elder can supply trained and committed caregivers who are passionate about their work.
Elder takes the time to carefully match a caregiver to your loved one, ensuring that they will have common interests, which helps to forge strong bonds. So if your loved one has a passion for a certain genre of films, for example, Elder will endeavour to source a carer who shares that interest.
Using an agency gives you freedom from performing the necessary security checks, as these will be done for you. With no PAYE or pension schemes to organise, you and your elderly loved one is free to enjoy all the benefits of live-in care, without any of the associated problems of employing someone yourself.
Is Postoperative Home Help Necessary?
If your loved one is due to come out of hospital following surgery, arranging appropriate home help can allow them to be discharged sooner and to start recovery in their own home.
Five Reasons a Loved One Might Need Home Help
If you are considering elderly care options for your loved one, then help at home from a dedicated live-in carer is often the most favoured option.
How Do I Choose the Right Home Help?
If you have an ageing parent or relative who is no longer as able they once were, it’s important to understand the different types of help available before deciding on the type that they need.