How can I choose the right home care agency?
Once you have determined home care is the best option for you or your loved one, it is important to evaluate your values and preferences or those of the person receiving care. He or she may be more comfortable with a home care worker who shares his or her cultural background and/or language. The care recipient may also have a preference between male and female caregivers, particularly if the worker helps with personal care. The following questionnaire may help you include alternative (and possibly less expensive) approaches to care such as adult day care, friendly visiting services, home grocery delivery and pharmacy delivery. Choosing a home care agency for yourself or your loved one is a big task and can often be overwhelming. Below is a check list of things to look for when making your decision. Don’t be afraid to ask potential providers any or all of these questions.
- Does the home care agency involve the family in care decisions?
- Do they have caregivers available 24 hours a day, seven days a week?
- Do they ensure patient confidentiality?
- Do they have the proper business license and/or necessary state licensure?
- Do they provide an itemized bill for payment?
- Do they give references?
- Do they provide a care plan?
- Do they provide a document outlining their responsibilities?
- Do they have insurance?
- Do they have multi-language caregivers?
- Do they perform background checks on all employees?
- How does the home care agency train its employees?
- How do they handle complaints?
- How do they handle emergencies?
- How long has the agency been serving the community?
- What type of payments does the home care agency accept?
- How quickly can the agency start services?