Choosing a care provider is a difficult choice that many of us face at some point in our lives. When a loved one is facing the prospect of care, it could be many weeks or months until the reluctant decision is taken to look for at-home care. This could come with emotional and financial challenges, as you and your loved ones adjust to the prospect of having to choose a care provider.
There are a few things that are important to look out for.
At home consultation
Having an at-home consultation is necessary so that you can ask any questions in the comfort of your loved one’s home. It also allows you to assess how the company conducts itself and you can find out more about their processes.
Is the consultation free? It should be. At this stage, you have no obligation to purchase, so it should be considered as a meeting to explore the potential relationship with the provider.
Meeting the carers
Of course, finding a gentle and compassionate carer is paramount. Care providers should provide a matching service, meaning that your loved ones preferences, personality and needs are matched with a relevant Care Giver. This is an important aspect of helping to create a harmonious atmosphere in the home and a smooth transition into care. A good matching service should be reviewed at regular intervals to make sure that the match is still going well.
Having the proper security checks and insurance is something that should be discussed at the first meeting. Usually, a Care Giver should have a DBS check and be verified by the care provider. The care provider should also be registered with the Care Quality Commission.
Training and experience
Care Givers should go through a rigorous recruitment process, testing various aspects of their skills, experience and personality. For example, we provide rigorous training to ensure our Care Givers pass the Care Certificate and all the mandatory training as outlined by Skills for Care.
Additional needs based training is also provided, along with mandatory in role shadowing, regardless of the person’s previous experience in care.
Privacy and confidentiality
How secure is your data? A good care provider should be able to let you know the systems and processes they use.
When choosing a care provider, it’s important to understand the communications protocol. How will care visits be recorded and communicated? What is their escalation procedure for communicating comments and issues?
Technology can be a huge sense of comfort and reassurance during this time. Real time update apps can help to provide details on your loved ones care, their mood and any physical conditions.
If something goes wrong, being informed immediately is top priority. Check the care providers emergency procedures policy. What happens if there is an accident, or a fire, or domestic issue in the house?
Do they have a document log? Is there a way of recording any emergencies, and what is the safety protocol?
Does this care provider come highly recommended? Do others respect the service on offer, and are there testimonials you can read to find out more about other’s experiences?
These are just a few considerations when choosing care for your loved one. Feel free to contact us if you would like some specific, impartial advice.