Home care is a great option for elderly people who want to stay in the comfort and familiar surroundings of their own home. But inviting carers into your home can feel like a big step. It won’t do to invite any old person in: you need to know your carer has got the right skills and qualifications and that they’re someone you can trust and get along with.
Finding a carer who ticks all those boxes can feel like a challenge, so here are our top five tips to help you choose a great carer.
Decide on the Kind of Home Care You Need
The first thing to decide is the type of support you need. The best homecare companies offer a range of services to elderly people including:
- One-off care visits – perhaps you’re recovering from an illness and need an extra helping hand or you have
asome one-off jobs you need support with. A single visit from a personal assistant or carer is the perfect solution as they will visit when it’s convenient for you with no need for any further commitment.
- Respite care – everyone needs time to rest and relax, even more so when that person cares for someone else, particularly if they’re elderly. Whether your usual carers need emergency cover or they simply want an afternoon off, a weekend break or a longer holiday, respite care is a great option. It’s a flexible solution that’s key to ensuring your continued wellbeing and that of your customary carer.
- Live-in care – as the name suggests, live-in personal assistants stay with you in your own home. With bespoke one-to-one support, live-in carers provide complete assistance including:
- Cooking, cleaning and washing
- Engaging you in activities and hobbies you enjoy
- Providing companionship
- Helping you to attend appointments
With long hours involved, this costs more than other home care options although it’s likely to be much more cost-effective than moving into a care home. Plus, you get to stay in the comfort of your own home, surrounded by your creature comforts.
Find the Right Carer For You
Deciding to accept care from someone new can feel a little daunting. After all, this person will be spending time with you in your home, potentially on a regular basis. You need to know you can trust them and that they have the right skills and experience to meet your needs.
Look for homecare companies that give you the option to select your own carers. The best will provide:
- A photo of your future carer, their name and where they’re from in Manchester
- Rigorous checks into your personal assistant’s skills and qualifications – from elderly and dementia care to infection control and nutrition, you want to be sure your carer can provide what you need
- Ratings and feedback from other people who have used the carers – this way you get to see what other people think before making your decision
- A criminal record check so you can be certain the person you’re inviting into your home is completely trustworthy
- Other useful information like the languages the personal assistants speak in addition to English, whether they work with pets and the type of care they provide
Traditional homecare companies don’t usually empower you to choose your own carer. Look for an online home care provider to enable you to take control in your search for the perfect personal assistant.
Get More for Your Money
Caring is one of society’s most important jobs, but this isn’t always reflected in the rates of pay. That can mean carers at traditional agencies are in and out quickly in an effort to earn more.
We recommend finding a provider that’s transparent about their rates, like Holm Care in Manchester, so you know exactly how much you’ll be paying and how much your carer receives.
Homecare companies who commit to paying a real living wage ensure that your personal assistants can afford to spend the full hour you’ve paid for supporting you. Not only does this mean you get more for your money but your carer has enough time to be focussed on your needs.
Fit Home Care Around You
Nobody wants to be waiting around all day for a care assistant. Which is why it’s important to find a home care provider that gives you the power to fit appointments around your schedule.
Simply decide whether you need a single or several hours of care and pick a time that suits you best. Then relax knowing you’ll get the help you need, plus plenty of time to do other activities or welcome visitors.
You also need to be able to source a home care provider who allows you to book more than one carer. This means that if one of your personal assistants goes off sick or is unavailable, you always have a backup – one that you’ve chosen.
Of course, sometimes life gets in the way and you’ll need to make alternative plans. So ensure your provider lets you cancel bookings with 24 hours notice with a full refund.
Look for Secure Payment Methods
Using cash to pay for personal services can feel awkward, particularly if you get to know your carers well. And it can be just as tricky if you don’t know them at all.
Homecare companies that enable you to make payments electronically remove this issue. And, with secure payment systems via trusted providers like PayPal, your money is transferred safely and everyone has a record of the transaction.
As you can see, there are lots of considerations when choosing a great home carer. They need to be:
- Trustworthy and reliable
- Able to provide the right kind of support for you
- Sufficiently well-paid to ensure you receive a full hour’s work and attention
- Able to fit in around the rest of your life
- Be easy to pay without the risk of cash
Holm Care is a website that makes it simple to do all of the above by empowering you to search for and choose outstanding personal carers across Greater Manchester. Take a look at our easy-to-use website to find your perfect match.