When it comes to caregivers, we are spoilt for choices. From family caregivers to home care agencies to independent caregivers; we have numerous options at our disposal.
Generally, family caregivers shoulder the responsibility of taking care of senile members in their family, but a few remain unaware of how to get paid as a family caregiver and have to abandon their responsibilities due to financial issues, leaving home care agencies and independent caregivers as the two viable options.
Both home care agencies and independent caregivers provide an assortment of services, making it difficult for the families to choose the apt one. However, by reflecting on certain factors, you can make a sound choice. The factors listed below can help you decide which one is the best for you.
Factor #1: Cost
The cost of the service is one of the most relevant questions that pop up while choosing between agency care and independent caregivers.
A caregiver agency takes a fat paycheque in exchange for its services, which is duly justified considering the quality of the service they offer. The agencies do not let you worry about the tedious tasks like tax paperwork, insurance requirements, payroll details, employee background checks, reference checks, etc., and hence, save your valuable time and effort.
Independent caregivers, on the other hand, cost you much less as compared to the caregiver agencies. However, they leave you with the responsibilities of all the paperwork and background investigations.
Factor #2: Quality
The quality of care or services is not a debatable factor as it largely depends on the interpersonal skills, background, and training of the caregiver.
However, when talking inclusively, the agencies score better in terms of quality of services. They always send qualified, certified, trained, and licensed caregivers to you. Moreover, they carry out a thorough background check of their employees.
Factor #3: Types of services
Caregivers are trained to provide an array of services to the aging, ailing, and disabled people. They provide medical care like wound care, monitoring vital status, administering injections, etc, and also assist the recipients in their day-to-day activities, like walking, eating, getting dressed, etc.
Independent caregivers go the extra mile by assisting the recipients in the instrumental activities, like running errands, going shopping, taking them for a short walk or to the doctor, etc.
If you are looking for a caregiver, well-versed at providing medical care to the recipient, seeking help from an agency will be a better option as finding a trained and licensed independent caregiver may take months. However, the caregiver assigned by the agency won’t run errands for you as it will be against their company’s rules.
Factor #4: Ease of hiring
Of course, hiring a caregiver from an agency is much easier than looking for an independent caregiver.
With home care agencies, you just need to go through a simple process- tell them what you want, and they lead you to a perfect caregiver who checks all your boxes.
Factor #5: Coverage for sick days or vacations
All human beings, including doctors, nurses, and caregivers, fall sick. When a private caregiver falls sick or takes a break for any reason, you won’t have any backup. You will have to walk into the caregiver’s shoes and take care of things until they resume their duty.
But, with a home care agency, you will always have someone to swoop in for the off duty caregiver. If a caregiver is sick, has a family emergency, or goes on a vacation, the agency appoints someone else to cover for them, brushing all worries off your head.
Hiring a caregiver for our loved ones is an inevitable decision that we all make at some point in our lives. We hope this information helps you in making the right choice.