What should I know about home care?
Choosing a care provider for yourself or a loved one is a big decision, and you should make sure you do your research first. Finding care to fit your budget is one thing, so if you’re wondering ‘What should I know about home care?’ here are some considerations to help you find the right home care in Reading and Wokingham and the surrounding area.
1. Look at what services they provide
Just as everyone’s care needs are different, there are a variety of care providers out there all offering different services. If you or your loved one has a specialist medical condition, look for a provider with experience and testimonials relevant to that condition. Next, have a close look at how each provider defines home care. Here are some questions to think about:
- How is care personalised to the individual?
- How long are visits?
- Do they make an effort to visit when it’s best for the client or when it’s best for them?
- Can they visit around the clock?
- Are services flexible if my loved one’s needs change?
Make a list of what you want from home care: does your loved one have a pet they need help with, or a hobby they enjoy? Will they need help with meals? Care will have a big impact on you or your loved one’s life, so don’t settle for a provider that can’t support your loved one’s wellbeing as well as their physical needs.
2. Find out about the people they hire
Most care providers will tell you about their team or hiring practice on their website, but you can also look at the wording in their job ads. While you want the person delivering the care to be qualified, if they prioritise personality and a compassionate nature when hiring and provide in-house training, that can be a better indication of the quality of care you or your loved one will receive. Some providers may also make an effort to match clients with carers they’ll get along well with. Some additional questions to ask prospective care providers include:
- What is your staff turnover like?
- How will you ensure continuity of care if the carer is on holiday?
- What kind of background checks do you perform and do you check references?
- Can my loved one request a different carer if they want to?
3. Learn about the standard of care
Care providers are regulated by the Care Quality Commission and may be registered with the UKHCA or other associations (for example, we’re also registered with the Berkshire Care Association). Ask them how they safeguard clients, handle complaints, and ensure quality of care.
Your care provider should work with you or your loved one to set up a bespoke care plan during an initial assessment, but check what their protocol is if there’s an accident or emergency during a visit and how often they will review the care plan to make sure it’s meeting your loved one’s needs.
When you’ve done your research, schedule an in-person meeting with the Registered Manager to get a better feel for the care provider. If you’re looking for care for someone else, make sure they’re present at this meeting, which will often be in the home where the care will take place. Ask them any questions you have, and always remember you can change carer or care provider at any time. This is a big decision, and if you don’t find the right provider first time, keep looking until you find your perfect match.
To find out more about Heroes Homecare in Reading and Wokingham call us on 0118 403 2562.