If you or someone you love cannot make it through a day without assistance, what do you do? This is an emotional and difficult issue that most families have to deal with sooner or later. One option would be to have an adult child move in with the care recipient, or the other way around so that there is always someone available to run errands and provide companionship. But sometimes a move isn’t feasible. Alternatively, one can move into a retirement home that offers on-site services, but the move away from home can be difficult.
Providing in-home care can be the best of both worlds. A caregiver provides aid in the home of the care recipient on average for $21 per hour. However, caregivers can perform a wide range of tasks. Depending on the situation, some people only need help with heavy lifting, while others need help with daily activities like bathing and dressing, or even medical attention. How do you find a caregiver who is qualified, and what are the types of caregivers?
Skilled care and custodial care
In order to change an IV or a catheter, you will need to hire someone who has a medical license. You will want to look for the words “skilled care” or “home health care.” For assistance that does not require medical expertise, you need “custodial care,” “home care,” “personal care” or “attendant care.” An attendant can assist in activities of daily living, also known as ADLs, such as cooking, cleaning, bathing, and dressing.
Types of licenses
Caretakers are required to have licenses in some states. Nevertheless, even if this isn’t true in your state, you should find a licensed caregiver. A Home Health Aide license allows a caregiver to provide custodial care. HHAs cannot perform clinical tasks, but can assist patients with their medication and ADL’s. A Certified Nursing Assistant, who reports to a nurse, is qualified to care for a patient who is ill even if the patient needs to go to a hospital or other medical facility; CNAs are qualified to change wound dressings and help patients by bathing them or changing sheets.
The majority of caregivers, whether medical or custodial, are purely professional with their patients. A companion is also expected to socialize with the care recipient. When elderly people feel isolated at home, spending a few hours a week chatting or playing cards with a companion can make all the difference.
When it comes to choosing a caregiver, there are many factors to consider. By knowing the right terminology, you can make the selection as easy and painless as possible.
Elder Care Problems and Solutions
Click here to watch the Sandoval Legacy Group webinar — Elder Care Problems and Solutions and download a copy of our free eBook. In the webinar, Dennis and guest host Carolyn Michaelis discuss various elder care issues, including finding quality caregivers.
Carolyn can assist you in finding a caregiver that meets your needs. Click here for more information.
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