Growing old is inevitable, but growing old with a companion, is a choice! A care agency that is designed to provide support, nursing, and healthcare, should first and foremost, offer companionship. Whether you’re choosing an agency for a family member or choosing for yourself to have care in your own home, agency hired care assistants should be well trained in both, health care and soft skills. Once you’ve come up with a list of prospective care agencies, you need to dig a little deeper and seek additional information. After all, you want to ensure you and your loved ones are in safe hands, is it not!
Agency credentials and certification
The first thing you need to do is to check if the agency is nationally recognised by a CQC – Care Quality Commission. A CQC registered agency is evaluated and reviewed on various parameters of health care, including safety, effective, caring, responsive and well-led. You will be able to find the CQC rating of each Care Agency on their website and on the CQC official website.
Before you approach an agency, you need to be clear on the exact requirements you are seeking. You can then check the programs offered by the agency like, 24-hour care, hourly care, and daily check-ins. In case you do not find the exact requirements you are looking for, enquire if the agency develops a care plan by assessing individual clients. In case of general care plans, review the plan carefully; check the duties listed, number of work hours, work days, and so on. An agency that has a well drafted care plan knows the importance of healthcare and assistance for the elderly.
Costs and coverage
Depending on the assistance or care plan, check how much the agency quotes. Although the costs are normally calculated on an hourly basis, agency pricings vary. You also need to check how the agency handles payments and how invoices are made.
Quality and services
Before deciding on an agency, check if they have a 24-hour contact number in case of an emergency or to raise concerns and complaints. In order to assess the quality of services they offer, do not hesitate to ask for references. These can either be from their previous clients or from doctors who can vouch for the agency. Also ask if their Care Assistants have had the correct background checks.
Once you have arrived at a decision, check on how quickly the agency can start their services. Remember, a care assistant is more than just offering healthcare services-- it is about establishing a bond and offering companionship. So make sure you give a care agency enough thought before arriving at a decision!