When it comes time to look for home care services for someone you love, it can be challenging to choose the provider that is best for your family. If you need a home health aide, Philadelphia has a lot of great options. When you’re ready to choose an agency, here are three questions you should ask before choosing a home health aide:
How Do You Recruit Your Home Health Aides?
How an agency recruits for its employees can say a lot about the quality of care they are likely to provide for your loved one. A great agency is willing to invest in marketing that draws in talented and reputable aides. These agencies will have a website with a careers page that provides detailed information about the jobs they offer and the qualifications they look for in candidates.
Recruit Through Diverse Channels
Agencies that get the best candidates usually recruit through very reputable services, like Indeed or Zip Recruiter. These websites advertise jobs on internet job boards, accept applications, and forward them to the agency. Agencies can choose paid plans that target their job openings to specific users who have experience or education that meet their requirements. This helps ensure that their postings will receive applications from top-quality candidates.
Reputable agencies might also invest in marketing their career opportunities through local media like newspaper, television, or radio ads. If you’ve seen or heard an ad for a home health service, chances are potential employees have, too. It is a good sign when an agency is willing to spend a little money to make sure they get the best employees.
Ask Potential Home Health Companies How They Recruit
If an agency tells you they only recruit through free websites or message boards like Craig’s List, this is a potential red flag. While it isn’t always necessary to spend a huge amount of money on recruitment, using sites like Craig’s List sends a message that the agency is not concerned with the quality of candidate the ads will attract. Also, job seekers who are looking for jobs on a site like that are probably not looking for a long-term career.
You need to know that only the most qualified and experienced aides are providing home care services for your loved one. Before you commit to an agency, fully understand where they find candidates so you can feel comfortable with the potential pool of caregivers for your loved one.
How Do You Screen Your Applicants?
Not only are background checks good practice, in some states they are required by law before a candidate can be hired as a home health aide. In most instances, applicants will undergo a criminal history check, child and adult abuse record checks, and pre-employment drug screening.
Ask each prospective agency how they conduct background screenings. Many agencies will use a third-party screening service to conduct criminal history checks. Certain types of criminal offenses will likely exclude a candidate from being hired as a home health aide. Agencies should also screen child and adult abuse records with the state bureau of health and human services or child protective services. Candidates who have substantiated claims on their record will not be hired as a caregiver.
What Are Their Hiring Requirements?
Also ask the agency what their requirements are for hiring aides, such as CNA or HHA. It may not be necessary for aides to have specific licensing or credentials for home care services like companionship or cooking and cleaning. If your loved one will need medical assistance, you may want to make sure the aide is properly licensed.
If licensing is required, ask the agency how they verify credentials and if they regularly monitor their employees’ licensure to ensure they remain in compliance. If the agency you’re interviewing does not perform these screenings or checks, find out why. Agencies that are not concerned with the backgrounds of their potential employees will not be very concerned about the quality of care these individuals will provide your loved one.
How Do You Train Your Employees?
A good agency will have a robust training and continuing education policy for its employees. Not every employee of a home care agency will need extensive medical training. However, at a bare minimum, every employee should be CPR and first aid trained. Even if your loved one will not require medical assistance, you will feel better knowing your home health aide is able to handle an emergency.
Find out what other training the employees must go through when they are first hired. Employees providing medical care should be trained on the specific best practices of the agency and be able to demonstrate proper care techniques. They should also be trained on the agency protocol of how to respond during an emergency.
Verify Home Health Aide Training
In addition to new employee training, verify that the agency requires each employee to undergo regular refresher training or certification in the core competencies of their position. It is not enough for an employee to be trained once upon hire. All employees should be continuing their training and education to ensure they are always up to date on best practices and agency policy. When you know an agency invests in properly training its employees, you will have more confidence in your decision to choose its home care services.
Meet An Aide Before You Commit
Once you’ve asked your questions and feel ready to choose an agency, ask to meet the potential aides before one is selected for you. Invite the aide to the home in which they’ll be working and let them meet your loved one. The two will be spending a lot of time together, and it is important that your loved one feels comfortable with the aide. This will also give your loved one more involvement in the decision and help make the difficult transition a little easier.
Choose Care & Help Home Care
If you’re in need of a home health aide, Philadelphia’s best are at Care & Help Home Care, LLC. We’re committed to providing transparent and professional home care services for your loved ones. Contact us today.