Quite possibly one of the toughest jobs in the world is being a caregiver. Yes, it is extremely rewarding but it comes with many challenges. Caregivers are likely to help toilet, bathe, dress, do some meal preparations, complete light house-cleaning, and shopping for those that are sometimes homebound and disabled to some degree. This requires trust from those they are taking care of.
Here in Mountain Home, we have a short supply of people that are willing to do this. Why you may ask? The pay is on the lower scale because of the level of government reimbursement, and it is physically and emotionally challenging. However, there is a growing need for caring individuals that take pride in the service they are giving. Below are some cautions to being hired or hiring "off-the-street" caregivers.
Potential Caregivers- It is possible to hire out on one's own for someone who is not with an agency. This is tempting, but I caution caregivers about doing this. The caregivers may make more money per hour than they would if trained and assigned through an agency, but the liability it too high. With risks such as prescriptions that have a tendency to be "off", Alzheimer's or dementia forgetfulness, and seniors that have a greater fall-risk, caregivers are in danger of legal ramifications. Hiring on with an agency that provides training and careful watching of health which will protects caregivers in a home.
Potential Clients- Agencies are working double-time to find quality caregivers for clients in Mountain Home and surrounding areas. It can be frustrating to be patient while agencies match desired times and days to caregivers. It is tempting to find your own caretaker. I also caution about this because agencies complete background checks and training with each caretaker that could potentially save you. You are bringing a stranger into your home. An agency is monitoring caregiver hours, behaviors, and answering to complaints you have. This is far better than if you have missing money, prescriptions, or if you fall because someone was not trained. Far too many seniors have been taken advantage of.
We need quality, trained caregivers in this town. Agencies are ready to hire. Please consider using an agency whether looking for employment or hiring your own caregiver. It is not worth the risk for either party to hire outside. As always, feel free to contact me directly with questions at: 208-591-0527. (Brandie Garltiz, Community Health Care Blogger).