Seeking Out a Helping Hand: Your 5-Step Checklist for Selecting a Caregiver Agency
Whether a family member has been injured in a car accident, a workplace accident, has become debilitated by a chronic disease or is a senior citizen wishing to age at home, there may be a need to select a caregiving agency. In some cases, a long-term disability settlement will finance this care and, in other cases, it will be financed by Medicare, Medicaid, health insurance, personal savings, or a combination of these. Following a 5-step checklist will help a family find the right in-home caregiver.
Getting Financial Help to Finance Long-Term Home Health Care
The reason a person needs long-term home health care will determine where to go for financial help. If a person has been injured in a car or work accident or by someone else’s negligence, a lawyer specializing in disbaility claims may be needed. A lawyer may also be needed for people who have trouble getting their health insurance company, Medicare, SSI, or Medicaid to honor their disability or health insurance.
Attorneys routinely dealing in disability insurance litigation help the disabled, the sick, and the elderly recover wrongfully denied or unreasonably delayed insurance benefits. They deal with the insurance companies or attorneys representing those who caused injuries or who should be paying disability benefits.
Following Five Steps to Select A Caregiver Agency
Once financing has been secured, the person or their family can start the process of selecting an in-home care agency. Follow these five steps.
- Talk to the person’s physician, friends, and family to get feedback about the type and the amount of care that will be needed. If family members and friends have been helping, will they continue assisting with care? Or, will the caregiver agency be taking over all or part of these tasks?
- Make a list of all the types of help the person will need and how often they will be needed. ADL or activities of daily living might include personal hygiene, grooming, bathing, and getting dressed. Use of the toilet, eating, and mobility may be additional issues. There may also be housekeeping and medical needs.
- Come up with a budget for this ongoing home care. This will include income, savings, insurance, disability settlements, Medicare, Medicaid, and perhaps financial help from family members. Other ways to get money to add to the budget are reverse mortgages, cash from a life insurance policy, or downsizing the home.
- Finding and interviewing in-home care agencies. Find reputable care agencies with the help of referrals from the family doctor, in-home care directories, and the local senior citizen agency on aging. Choose several agencies to interview and compare. Ask about employee background checks and their level of training.
- Are there home health care workers with medical training if that is needed? Does the agency take care of payroll, taxes, and legal matters for the caregiver? What is the time availability of the caregiving staff? What are the financial costs and payments? Ask other questions as needed.
Finally, the caregiving agency and the family must pick the perfect care provider for the person needing help. Personality, needs, and preferences must be honored. Try for one aide rather than multiple ones so a bond can be formed. The personalities of the caregiver and the patient must be compatible. The caregiver must be qualified and able to do all the required tasks.
Selecting the correct home caregiver agency and the perfect home health aide can make the difference between a person successfully living and aging at home or needing to be moved into a care facility.