As many elderly people need a little help from time to time, they may lean on their friends and family members for support, or in some instances, seek additional assistance or long-term care. To anyone who provides care for someone who needs extra help like the elderly, the help of home caregivers who would perform care-related activities in the home and personal care for them, and relieves the caregiver burden of a family member. Generally, caregivers do not work under the direction of a doctor or nurse and are not typically considered healthcare professionals; however, there are some exceptions.
What Are The Types Of Caregivers?
There are many types of caregivers, of which the most common type is the family caregiver who isn’t paid but takes care of a family member. However, there are other types of caregivers that one must know, and they are professional, independent, private, informal, and volunteer caregivers. Here are descriptions for each to give an idea of what these jobs are like and their daily responsibilities.
Mostly, a family caregiver is a relative who provides emotional, financial, nursing, social, homemaking, and other services daily or intermittently for senior, ill, and disabled loved ones at their homes. As mentioned, this type of caregiver doesn’t receive pay and only voluntary care needs of a loved one.
This type of caregiver is hired to provide care for a care recipient. A professional caregiver offers medical or non-medical care in the facility or at home, and they work for an agency. The career of a professional caregiver is to assist another person in enabling them to live as independently as possible.
On the other hand, an independent caregiver is commonly used to describe a home care professional who does not work for an agency, unlike the professional caregivers. This type of caregiver is employed directly by the family; thus, there is no intermediary agency between the care recipient and the caregiver.
Private Duty Caregiver
This type of caregiver can provide a broad range of services, from medical and nursing care to bill paying and transportation services. Their job description is to provide whatever the senior and their family needs to remain independent in their own homes. The common thing is private duty caregivers may work independently or for 3rd party agencies.
This type of caregiver is typically a family friend or neighbor, providing care, generally unpaid, to someone they have a personal relationship with. On the other hand, an informal caregiver is slightly different from a family caregiver as this type of caregiver isn’t related to the family.
This type of caregiver usually works in either respite or hospice care. A volunteer provides breaks for someone caring for an adult with a disability, chronic illness, or frailty. However, they provide non-medical companionship but still give supervision to recipients, and most importantly, give a friendly new face for those with special needs.
Why Do You Need A Caregiver?
There are two major motivating factors for hiring a caregiver are:
- desire for independence
- the ability to stay in one’s own home
At the same time, residential care facilities can be a great choice for many seniors; not all people in this age group desire to leave their current homes and move into a managed community setting. Caregivers often serve as a midway between complete independence and life in a residential care facility. Moreover, some seniors need extra help and care but still feel comfortable managing most of their affairs. They tend to thrive when paired with the right caregiver—the main reason is independence and the ability to stay in one’s own home.
What Are The Requirements For Hiring Caregivers?
Confirming Caregiver Qualifications
As with any service provider, it’s essential to research and go through a careful selection process before hiring one since caregivers don’t have a standardized licensure or certification process. Ensure the caregiver understands the work expected of them since they are the kind of person you’d like to spend time with. More importantly, the caregiver should have some experience and background working with seniors with competencies of caregiving assistance. Say, for instance, a private duty home caregiver that is tasked to drive the seniors to religious services should be a legally licensed driver with a clean driving record as well as those who provide physical therapy to seniors or persons with special care must have the proper education and licensure as proof.
Check Credentials and References
In the caregiver selection, asking for credentials and looking more profound than a simple description is expected. Since they are trusted with the seniors’ health, safety, and privacy in their care, the worthiness must be proven by family members looking for one. The professionals should provide detailed resumes and references and go through interviews and even background checks before they’re hired. It would be skeptical if a caregiver refuses to provide references and seems hesitant to be interviewed by the seniors and loved ones. Generally, good caregivers themselves usually want to interview a potential client to make sure they’d be a good fit. At the same time, agencies should be willing to provide this information regarding the caregivers they hire and their own operations as a business.
Ask for Referrals
Ask friends and community members if they know of anyone suitable to do the job of caregiving. Most of the time, doctor’s offices and other healthcare facilities that work with seniors regularly may also have some suggestions. Aside from that, religious organizations and other communities are a good resource in finding a private duty home caregiver that might be suitable. On the other hand, if the suggestion comes from a trusted friend, still undergo the same rigorous screening and interview process to ensure the expectation is met.
Take Your Time
Careful consideration and background check are the bottom lines with looking for a caregiver or agency before signing a deal. Moreover, never hesitate to consider multiple different caregivers before making a final choice. Note that this is someone the seniors or loved ones will be spending time with might as well look for someone they may be comfortable getting quite personal with.
Hiring an in-home caregiver might be the ideal solution for those with pre-existing health concerns that need to be monitored. Vitality Home Health offers this type of caregiving service or “homemaker service“, for your loved one who requires more assistance adjusting to the hectic pace of life.
Some of a homemaker’s duties are maintaining the house and providing for the family. Nurses primarily assist with health monitoring and health-related assistance, but the job of a homemaker is somewhat distinct. Consider it like hiring an assistant: the homemaker will perform all of the chores that a senior can no longer accomplish. Some seniors may still be able to do many chores. In contrast, others may discover that once-simple activities such as laundry, dog-walking, gardening, and grocery shopping are now too time-consuming, exhausting, or stressful.