In it, she describes her mother, who has dementia, being left in the caretaker’s hot car for hours at a time, which she found out from a friend who saw this and reported it to her. As it turns out, the caretaker was visiting her boyfriend on caretaker time, leaving mom in the sweltering car during these “conjugal” visits.
Unfortunately, such bad care-taking happens all too frequently, and not because we who did the hiring, don’t care enough to find someone good. It’s more like given the time and effort it can take to make sure you have the right person on the job, we can easily become unwittingly careless. As Ms. McClure puts it quite well: … “many well-meaning and caring adult children are just as lackadaisical as I was when hiring help for their parents.”
Here’s the very good news: Finding quality assistance personnel doesn’t have to be difficult – if you know the right way to look.
- First, use an accredited home health service – you will pay more per hour, but you will get a much higher quality person, and many priceless value added benefits like background checks on workers, fill-in help if your worker calls in sick, and a company you can hold legally accountable. We’ll have on our website two services that I can recommend. To get you started, I can recommend: eldercarelink.com a national service which connects you to the resources in your community; and in Tampa Bay, Harmony Home Healthcare, at harmonyhh.com or you can call 727-723-7532
- Second, treat this as the job interview it is whether or not you’re using a home care service – have a basic job description developed, and insist on at least 2 references for anyone you’re considering.
- Finally, look closely at the level and quality of training the person possesses or the agency provides their care personnel. Untrained may be cheaper, but there’s a reason for that…don’t find out what it is at the expense of your loved one.