Does your parent or loved one need more assistance around the home, but you’re not able to become a caregiver for your parent and you’re not ready to move them into an assisted living community or nursing home? Placing your loved one in the care of someone else is undoubtedly worrisome, and the decision to use an in-home caregiver is not an easy one. However, knowing the right questions to ask can help make you and your loved one feel more comfortable and prepared.
#1: Do you have any work experience in caregiving or similar areas?
Not everyone will have the same amount of experience or will have more experience in certain areas. Specify which areas you are particularly looking for additional help (bathing, driving, lifting or transferring from bed to wheelchair, dressing, assistance with toileting, etc.). How much in-home care experience does the person have? What kind of work or educational background would be relevant for the position?
#2: What qualifications do you have?
Always ask for credentials and referrals. Has the caregiver been CPR or first-aid trained? Are they comfortable with dealing with the emotional and physical needs of your loved one? Some caregivers will be more trained and educated than others. Make a point to address these questions and you will ensure you are finding the most qualified caregiver.
#3: Why are you interested in this type of work?
You want to be sure your caregiver has your loved one’s best interest at heart. Keep your eye out for a caregiver that genuinely enjoys working with seniors and is a nurturing, patient individual. Does your loved one get cranky? Do they refuse to take medicine or corporate? Every patient is unique and you should inform the caregiver of these certain behaviors before hiring. Caring for a person in their home isn’t only about meeting their physical assistance needs, but providing an environment that feels comfortable and secure.
#4: What days and times are you available and how many hours are you looking for?
You want to be on the same page for how many hours and days are expected of the caregiver. An in-home caregiver cost will also vary depending on how often you need assistance. If you’re looking for someone to stay for scheduled overnights, discuss if this is an option as well. Be specific with the timeframes you need. Rather than asking, are you available for mornings? Pose it as: We need someone from 7:00 AM – 12:00 PM, does that work for you?
#5: Is there anything in the job description you aren’t comfortable doing?
Think about what specific roles you would need the caregiver to fulfill and make sure the caregiver is willing and able to perform all of those tasks. Is the caregiver comfortable driving your loved one if necessary? Will they be responsible for making meals? Will part of their role involve helping with bathing? The more specific you are with expectations, the better you’ll be able to find a good fit for your parent.
Every person is unique in the level of assistance they’ll require. You want to find a caregiver that is the best match to help out where needed but also allow your parent to remain as independent as possible. Asking the right questions will help you find the perfect caregiver for your loved one.