If you have a loved one suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, a home care agency can help you meet the loved one’s needs while also allowing him or her to remain in a more comfortable environment. However, agencies that provide dementia care and Alzheimer’s care are not all the same, and it is important to compare your options carefully before choosing a provider. Below are the top five things you should consider when selecting a home care agency for your loved one.
- Understand the Type of Home Care Needed
Home care agencies may provide medical in-home care or non-medical in-home care. For long-term care related to Alzheimer’s and dementia, non-medical home care is the right choice. Non-medical in-home care is designed to help clients with normal daily activities, such as bathing, dressing, using the bathroom and cooking. When considering different home care agencies, be sure to choose an agency that provides non-medical home care, and specializes in Alzheimer’s or dementia clients.
- Look at the Reputation of the Home Care Agency
Another important consideration is the reputation of the home care agency. Have you read their client testimonials? A home care agency’s reputation tells you whether past clients have had a positive experience, which provides you with valuable information about the quality of the agency’s services. You can learn about an agency’s reputation by asking for referrals, reading testimonials and researching the agency online.
- Scheduling Flexibility.
Depending on your situation, you may need help with your loved one at the same times each week, or you may need help at various times depending on your own schedule. Some clients may even need round-the-clock assistance with a loved-one. When considering different home care agencies, it is important to inquire about the agency’s availability and scheduling flexibility so you can be sure caregivers will be available when you need them.
- Caregiver Credentials.
To ensure that your loved-one is safe and cared for properly, it is necessary to consider the training and experience of the caregivers the agency employs. Before signing a contract with any home care agency, ask about the agency’s requirements for caregivers. Training and experience are especially important if your loved-one is suffering from some form of dementia.
- Cost Considerations
Another characteristic of in-home care that most people will need to consider is the cost. The cost of in-home care varies, depending on the type of care your loved one needs, the frequency of care and the agency’s policies. Most long-term, non-medical in-home care is NOT covered by health insurance or Medicare. Keep in mind that the quality of the care your loved one receives should always be your top priority, so choosing an agency solely based on lower prices may not be in your best interests.
Choosing a home care agency for your loved one with Alzheimer’s or dementia may feel overwhelming. However, by considering each of these factors above and comparing all of the options available carefully, you can feel confident in your decision.
Looking for more information? Check out the Family Guide to Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care and our other guides, located here.
Navigating the senior care world is often frustrating and overwhelming. The members listed on Approved Senior Network are here to guide you and your family through the confusion and make elder care easier.
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