What to consider before selecting an elder care provider?

by Martha Scully

According to the National Council on Ageing, more than 92% of seniors usually suffer from one chronic disease and 77% of them even suffer from two. The deteriorating health problems such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes in elders are totally taking the toll!

Isn’t it scary?

It indicates that our old parents who loved us with all their heart for the entire life need our attention. Along with the development of medical science, they definitely need utmost care. However, unfortunately, we are not able to be with them most of the time, thanks to the hectic 9-to-5 grind and other obligations of life.

In such a scenario, an elder care provider acts as a boon for us! Isn’t it?

There are many of them available out there but not all are worth enough. A huge percentage of elder care providers don’t seem to be up to the mark. Hence, it becomes pretty required to check out some significant factors before choosing one.

C’mon! You just can’t give the responsibility of your aged parents in the hands of any random being. Right?

Hence, take the following points into consideration before selecting a care provider for your elderly parents:

Check out the official papers

Before you finalize a care provider for your older parents who are no more able to take care of themselves, you’ve to be very cautious. The most important component that you need to take care of is licensing.

The care provider should have proper licensing. It will assure you that they are authentic people. Unfortunately, most of the people often don’t look for the official papers before choosing a senior care provider. However, it is something really very important!

The right license proves that the company has the highest standards. If you go for one such company, records will be reviewed on a routine basis, your home will be checked for safety, questions will be asked to you about the quality of the service and so on. There will be a continuous monitoring and hence you can be worry-free!

Look for options

Remember, each senior has specific requirements. The service they need varies from person to person. So, you need to look for all the available options before deciding on a senior caregiver.

For example, if your beloved parents are fairly mobile till now, you might require a help for housekeeping, laundry etc. Howbeit, if the condition is more severe, you will need a senior care provider who will be serving with everything starting from personal grooming, toileting and feeding assistance etc.

There are all such varied options available. All that you need to do is just opt for the right one!

Go for a right approach in the interview

Your beloved senior/seniors are going to stay with the caregiver that you’ll choose for them. Hence, it is very important to assure everything is best. For that, you’ve to prepare yourself perfectly for the interview.

Before the final day comes, you must prepare a list of questions that you’ll ask. You should even make sure that there is a listicle of applicants, caregiver agency, referral source, contacts of the references whom you might call during the interview. If you do so, it will finally let you end up with the best people to take care of your loving elderly people.

Don’t forget a criminal background check

If you are choosing such a caregiver who is paid by the state funds, a criminal background check is a must. It is necessary to look for if someone has any conviction for a disqualifying crime. Also, this is not the end!

Further, you should look for whether he/she has convictions for any such offences that might concern you or indicate ant safety risk. If you even ignore a bit of this, it might become pretty vulnerable for your beloveds in the long run.

A proper monitoring is needed

Just appointing a caregiver for your old parents doesn’t seem to be enough. You should keep a continuous eye on the quality of the service that he/she is providing. Probably, to set up a schedule for this could be the best.

As a family member, you should always personally contact the caregiver and regularly home visit with the elder. You should also ask for periodic reports from the caregiver and the agency. Finally, you will be sure enough that nothing is going wrong at all!

Give attention to the person’s attitude

When it comes to the person’s attitude, it is as important as the service provided by him/her. For someone to be a caregiver of senior citizens, he/she should have a positive attitude. The two prominent qualities to look for are companionship and compassion. It will help the elders to breathe and live in a lively environment.

Well, it’s not that easy to gauge a person by only hearing about him/her. So, it’s important to read the personal testimonials and reviews about the caregiver that you are considering. It will finally let you choose a true caregiver for the elderly people in the home.

Hire the one with basic medical knowledge

Almost all the senior people often have some or other kind of medical problems. It doesn’t mean that you have to hire someone with profound medical knowledge. For that, doctors are there!

However, it is recommended that you should go for someone who has at least a basic level of medical command. Precisely, there should be a possibility of first-aid in the home if there is any sudden accident.

Thus, taking care of your loveable elderly parents in the best possible way isn’t at all a tedious task anymore. All that you need to do is take the aforementioned strides. Finally, you will be ending up with the best senior caregiver in the town.

About the Author
Martha Scully
Martha is the founder of CanadianNanny.ca. Martha has been featured as a Child Care Expert in hundreds of publications across Canada including The Globe and Mail, CBC, Today's Parent and The National Post, She lives in British Columbia with her husband and two daughters.