Choosing a Home Health Aide in Willow Alaska
Having to find home health care services in Willow AK for a family member can be a stressful situation. Finding a good home health aide can be made even more difficult if it is necessary due to a sudden illness or debilitation that necessitates an immediate decision. Further complicating issues is the need to convince the person in need of at home assisted care to accept help. We all value our independence and it can be difficult for some to accept having a stranger come into their home and help with intimate needs such as dressing or bathing. But as our life expectancy increases and our elderly parents have more age related impairments, the need for at home nursing and elder care increases as well. And most seniors when asked respond that they would much rather stay at home than be committed to a nursing home or assisted living facility. But what do most families know about finding the best available home health care services in 99688 for their loved ones? Following are some tips on choosing the right health aide or at home nurse for a parent or other family member.
Home Care and Home Health Care
In general, home care is a non-medical assistance service. It is for individuals who need help performing daily activities such as bathing, dressing, preparing meals and other tasks they can no longer perform. In some cases it may be for those recovering from a surgery or an accident or medical condition that has left them temporarily or even permanently disabled to some degree. In most cases the home caregivers are not able to administer medication or change dressings. Home health care provides medical care in addition to the home care services provided in Willow 99688. Caregivers can be nurses or aides specially trained for the care needed. The services provided can range from in home nursing to physical therapy. There can be some intermingling of home care and home health care services, but generally when it becomes more involved medically, such as treating wounds, administering insulin or assisting with dementia related illnesses, then a home health care professional is called for.
Home Health Care Agencies vs Independent Caregivers
The first decision when searching for an at home caregiver is whether or not to use the services of a Willow home care agency. Many people are concerned about the continuing expense of hiring a home care worker, especially if the need is long term, and look to lower expenses by seeking independent aides through Alaska newspaper or internet advertising. Yes, it can be cheaper to hire a helper this way, but unfortunately it may be more risky, perhaps even dangerous to hire a health aide independently. During our current hard economic times it is not uncommon for some people to take advantage of the elderly and the infirm, and the health care profession is not exempt from these types of practices. Protecting your loved ones against identity theft, misuse of credit cards or theft of money or valuables is also part of the screening process for a home health aide. And that of course is in addition to making sure that the helper is truly qualified and reliable enough to entrust to her (or him) the care of your loved one.
Advantages of a Home Care Agency
A reputable Willow home health care agency will do a thorough screening of each caregiver that it hires. They will not only screen for suitability and qualification for the job, but will perform a complete background check as well. This includes a search of national and preferably international criminal records. Some will also perform drug screenings. And you should only consider an agency that is Alaska licensed, insured and bonded for your protection. That way in the case of theft there is a remedy. Some additional benefits of using a home health care agency are:
- Experience. An established home care agency has been in the business long enough to know the field and how to hire qualified and reliable caregivers. Look for an agency that has been in business for a while as longevity in the field is a big plus. The longer they have been in business the easier it will be to research their past performance.
- Training and Supervision. The best home care agencies will train and supervise their employees. Check to make sure that the agency is actually responsible for its employees and not placing independent contractors that they no longer have responsibility for or contact with after they receive a placement fee. This is known as an “employer model agency”.
- Nursing Staff Support. You should look for an agency that provides skilled nursing support to its home health aides. Having immediate access to a trained nurse for advice when a medical problem arises can often be the difference between a minor manageable issue and a trip to the emergency room.
More Tips for Hiring a Home Caregiver
As we have discussed, the advantages of using a good health care agency in Willow AK are that they will screen, qualify and train its employees, they are Alaska licensed, insured and bonded, they provide nursing staff support and are experienced in the field of providing in home health care. Some additional tips to consider before hiring a caregiver for your loved one are:
- Talk to your loved one first. If your parent or family member is able to, discuss the process with him or her first so that he or she feels like they are part of the decision making and hiring process.
- Determine the type of care needed. Exactly what level of care does your loved one need? Do they need someone to come to the home for an hour or two daily, during all waking hours, or 24 hours a day? This determination should be made before interviewing home health agencies as some specialize in one type of care over another.
- Consider a Trial Period. It is important that your loved one feel comfortable with the health aide worker you choose, so ask the agency if it is possible to proceed on a trial basis. If possible, ask for someone who has similar interests or something in common with your family member. Communicate with your loved one to see if they feel it is a good fit and get feedback from the caregiver as well.
Hire the Best Willow Home Health Care Services
Hiring the best home health care in Willow AK for your loved one does not have to be a stressful or confusing proposition if you follow the guidelines in this article. And most importantly, you will feel confident that your family member is not only receiving the in-home care that they need, but they are also protected and safe because you have done your due diligence by selecting a reputable home health care agency. Your parent or family member will also be happier that you have made it possible to remain in their home with the assistance of a professional caregiver.