How To Choose The Right Home Care Company
The demand for home care is exploding, driven by the rising population of seniors. But the number of companies offering home care is also growing rapidly, leading many of you to ask: “How do I decide which one is best for me when they all look pretty much the same?” Well, I can’t tell you which home care company to choose, but I can offer some advice on how to make that decision.
Hire the company, not the caregiver. Remember, you are hiring both an individual caregiver and the company she or he works for. Too many people choose the company based solely on the caregiver, not considering the systems and policies of the company. They don’t realize that providing good care is an ongoing process that must be managed effectively. So, choosing the right company is as important as choosing the right caregiver.
Dig deeper. Nowadays, most home care companies bond and insure their caregivers and require them to pass drug tests and background checks. So you have to dig a little deeper to make a good choice.
Find the right fit for you. Big companies have large rosters of caregivers and quick response times, but they may be less flexible than smaller companies when it comes to designing a care plan specifically for you. On the other hand, very small companies may lack the technology required to manage the business efficiently, or their roster of caregivers may be too small to provide consistent service. At FirstLight HomeCare, we seek a middle ground: large enough to efficiently serve you and small enough to provide a flexible care plan, custom-tailored to your needs.
Ask WHY? Most important, assess the commitment of the company’s owners to providing competent, compassionate care. Speak with them directly and find out why they chose this business, what their personal experience is in providing care, and why they think they can provide the highest quality care that you and your loved one deserve.
Questions. Here are a few more things to ask a home care company.
• How is the care plan developed and by whom?
• Do you offer a client portal, so I can see what caregivers have done each day?
• Does management introduce new caregivers personally or do caregivers arrive at an address and introduce themselves?
• Can caregivers log in their arrivals and departures electronically to ensure timeliness and accurate billing?
• How do you handle situations when a caregiver cannot make it due to illness or a personal emergency?
Editor’s Note: This article submitted by John Richards, Owner, FirstLight HomeCare Of Fairfield County203-636-0991.