What are some things to look for in selecting a caregiving agency?


Quick Answer

When selecting a caregiving agency, things to look for include the type of personal care it provides, the agency's transportation policy, how it handles after-hours emergencies and its rates. The client's condition should be considered to determine his needs in an agency.

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Full Answer

Types of personal care include companion care, personal care and skilled care. Companion care typically involves helping the client with daily errands and tasks, but the caregiver generally doesn't touch the client for this level of care. Personal care includes hands-on activities, such as bathing and toileting. Only a licensed professional, such as a nurse, can perform skilled care.

Some agencies don't allow the caregiver to transport the client. For those that do, some provide a vehicle, while others allow the caregiver to use his own vehicle or the client's vehicle.

For issues outside of normal business hours, an agency may use an answering service, a pager system or have staff available at all times. Depending on the client's condition, after hours assistance may be necessary.

Agencies may charge an hourly rate or offer packages of service. The value of the plan should be considered, not just the price. Caregiving services usually aren't covered by insurance, so the client's family should check for programs that are available to alleviate the cost.

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