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When the responsibility of caring for an aging or ill loved one rests on your shoulders, you don’t want to leave any part of their care to chance. In order to ensure that all your loved one’s needs are met, you should carefully consider your personal situation. Is it best to personally select a private caregiver, or is it better to contract with a professional home care agency? Here’s what you should know before making a decision.
A private caregiver is someone personally selected by you or your family to care for your loved one’s needs. Though this is often a personal acquaintance, many families contact their private caregivers through classified ads or other job postings. While such an arrangement may be appropriate in some circumstances, private caregivers are noticeably limited when compared to professional agencies.
Privately contracted caregivers may be skilled and knowledgeable when it comes to caring for the chronically ill, but their training tends to be informal and may have significant gaps. In contrast, a home care agency has access to a broad pool of caregivers and can select one with experience related to your needs.
When a private caretaker is sick or needs to take a personal day, there is no guarantee that they will be able to find a suitable replacement, potentially leaving your loved one without care – or you scrambling to rearrange your schedule. Since home care agencies have more resources at hand, they are able to guarantee coverage of all your scheduled needs (and can even pitch in for unscheduled emergencies).
If you choose to select your own private caregiver, the task of vetting their credentials and conducting a complete background check falls on you. Though reports of theft and elder abuse by caregivers are relatively rare, the risk is real enough to worth your attention. When you allow a professional agency to thoroughly screen each candidate, you gain peace of mind in knowing that your loved ones are in good hands.
When hiring a private caregiver, you may be for more than just their hourly wages. In many cases, families are responsible for complex issues such as insurance and liability, as well as federal and state withholding taxes. If all of this sounds like more than you’re willing to deal with, know that your local home care agency will take charge of all these issues, leaving you free to focus on more urgent matters.
In cases of chronic illness, it’s rare for your needs to remain unchanged for long periods of time. Rather, patients go through periods of relapse or progression at unpredictable times. Will a single private caregiver be qualified to handle such a large scope of needs? When needs suddenly change, families more often than not find themselves either paying too much for an over-qualified caretaker or desperately searching for a new candidate who meets their more advanced needs. In contrast, a home care agency can replace your caregiver at a moment’s notice and adjust your care plan to meet your changing needs.
If you’re ready to connect with highly-qualified home caregivers in your area, contact Fedelta Home Care today. As the home care agency of choice in the Puget Sound area, we have nearly two decades of experience meeting the diverse home care needs of our community. We are confident that our flexible, comprehensive services will be perfect for your family’s needs.