10 Questions to Ask When Hiring a Home Health Agency
In a recent blog, we explored several signs that alert you to the need for help from a home health agency. When faced with the reality that assistance has become necessary when it comes to caring for a loved one, there are several important items to consider. The following questions are a good start.
- What services does the agency offer?
This can vary widely from light assistance, for a few hours a week, to full-time specialized nursing care. Clients’ needs vary widely, it’s important to ensure that the needs fit with the services offered by the agency in question. AccuCare Home Health of St. Louis offers customized plans to meet the needs of each individual client, because every client is a unique individual.
- What qualifications/licensures does the agency hold?
For a loved one’s safety, and for peace of mind, only work with a qualified home health agency. State licensure is a bare minimum. Also inquire about training and certifications, and that the company is insured and bonded. AccuCare Home Health of St. Louis is a member of the Missouri Association of Home Care, the Better Business Bureau, and is an Emergency Medical Response Agency.
- Whom does the agency hire?
It is a well-known fact that caregivers face a great deal of stress at work and that pay is low compared with other professions. This leads to a high turnover rate in the industry. The people who provide one-on-one care must be chosen with great care. Thorough background checks are essential, as are basic certifications such as CPR. Don’t be afraid to ask about hiring practices and staff turnover. AccuCare Home Health of St. Louis is proud to say that we hold our carefully-screened caregivers to a high standard, they’ve been a part of our team for a long time and we greatly value each and every one of them.
- How are caregivers supervised and supported?
No matter how careful the screening process, caregivers need the support of management to provide the highest level of care. Our clients enjoy the support of a 24-hour Registered Nurse, as well as visits from a Nursing Supervisor to assure quality care. As a small, independent organization, our staff is empowered to make decisions as needed to best serve those in our care.
- How does the agency communicate with clients and families?
Questions or concerns should be regular and open, with easy access to those caring for a loved one. It is unacceptable to get the run around. We are always at the ready to speak with and share information with families and our caregivers to ensure that we are providing the best care possible.
In our next blog, we will continue with five additional questions that are important when determining which home health agency to hire for your loved one’s care.