A caregiver agency has a large pool of qualified caregivers to match your loved one’s needs. Agencies also handle things like background checks, insurance and workers’ compensation for their employees.
Goyer suggests asking the agencies you’re considering for proof of their license and bonding. You should also ask about their policies and procedures, pricing structure and training processes.
Caregivers are an important resource for older adults and those who need assistance due to disability. Hiring and retaining qualified caregivers helps ensure that safety protocols are followed and that clients receive high-quality home care services. Caregiver recruitment requires a thorough screening and assessment process to ensure that your business has the right people on staff.
Most families who hire a private caregiver opt for a full service agency that screens, hires and trains their employees. Independent caregivers may also be found through private registries or local connections. Choosing an independent caregiver typically allows the family to pay less but it can be more of a risk as they are responsible for hiring and firing their employee.
If a client is unhappy with their caregiver, finding a replacement can be costly and time-consuming. A caregiver agency can match the family with a new employee quickly, especially if they have an existing roster of qualified candidates on hand.
Caregivers work in the homes of elderly people and disabled people providing support services. They follow a schedule for daily tasks such as meal preparation, bathing and assisting with mobility. They may also help with laundry and errands, and escort clients to appointments or activities. They are screened, insured and protected by their agency which handles their paperwork for Medicare, Social Security and workers’ compensation insurance.
Caregiver training includes basic orientation and safety courses. Specialty training allows caregivers to work with specific populations like dementia patients or those with certain medical conditions. It can also teach them to identify abnormal observations in their clients, such as a change in urine color or blood pressure.
Agencies have a Care Coordinator or Manager who does the scheduling and maintains daily contact with each caregiver on assignment. They are often the first to respond to caregiver questions and concerns, and are responsible for relaying information to family members.
A caregiver can be a family member or friend, or someone paid to provide home health care. Some long-term care insurance policies include coverage for informal caregivers using the cash indemnity method.
Caregivers agency is one of the fastest growing healthcare industries in the country, driven by the need for seniors to receive meaningful and safe home care services. A private caregiving business can offer a range of benefits to attract and retain employees including paid time off, flexible scheduling and workers’ compensation.
A bonded caregiver is a guarantee by an independent contractor or agency that he or she will perform services in a professional and honest manner and not steal valuables from the client’s home. Many states require bonding for those who provide professional home health care services. A bonded caregiver is more likely to be accepted by an agency for employment. In addition, a bonded caregiver can provide the client with peace of mind that a substitute will be available in case of an unexpected illness or vacation of the original caregiver.
Agencies have a large pool of caregivers that they can select from and they take care of the employment screening, medical examination, drug testing and verification of licenses. This saves families the time and effort in selecting a caregiver and also reduces their liability.
Families may choose to hire independent caregivers directly but it can be complicated and expensive as they assume all employer-based responsibilities, including payroll taxes and withholdings. Family caregivers are also liable for workers’ compensation if they are injured on the job.
ALTCS offers a program called the Member-Directed Option which allows program participants who qualify to choose and pay their own attendants. This option is supported by Fiscal Intermediaries who manage the financial employment aspects such as paying the caregivers’ wages. For more information on this program contact a Single Entry Point Agency.