| Tuesday, May 10, 2011
By Eileen Serapio

When our parents experience difficulty in doing daily activities by themselves like bathing, dressing, or eating, they become a part of our everyday responsibilities. They need our support and care in times like this. However, when we have our own families to take care of and our own careers to manage, taking care of a loved one becomes tricky. We won't be able to handle everything by ourselves because we also get tired. Unless we are experts in time management, we won't be able to attend to all these tasks. Therefore, we need a personal caregiver who can stay take care of our loved ones at home.

Hiring a caregiver is not stress-free. It takes more than enough effort to be able to find that someone whom we can entrust our loved one's life with everyday. It is not that common to have close relatives as caregivers. Most of the time, these care providers are hired through agencies or are individual practitioners who have applied for the job or referred by a friend. And since they are strangers to the family they work for, certain issues like that of trust arise from the start of the screening process. With this difficulty at hand, here's a list of things one should not forget when deciding to go for home care.

Establish the kind of assistance needed. To help you decide whom to hire, just first find out the tasks that should be done by the caregiver. This will help screen applicants and identify their rates, skills and areas of expertise.

Check references. It is important to gather information about previous work experiences of a care provider. When trying to get someone from an agency, it is also a must that you know some essential information about that company in order to ensure the safety of your loved ones.

Make a list of duties. It is beneficial for both parties, the client and the caregiver, to present a list of duties before employment. This way, both sides will know what assistance is expected and misunderstandings will be prevented.

Supervise the caregiver. Even if you've already established trust with the care provider, it will be of your best interest to check on the carer and the patient regularly. This gives family members an idea of how the patient is doing.

Emergency Anticipation. Make sure to provide emergency phone numbers to the caregiver. Also make a list of To-Do's in case of any unforeseen trouble to prevent unpleasant things from happening.

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