Whether you are planning for the future or making an immediate decision regarding an aging loved one, discovering more about home care services is something you should have on your mind.
From understanding the cost structure to leveraging the most valuable services available, breaking down all of the details related to home care is important to obtaining the care you or your loved one needs.
Home Care FAQ
The following are the most commonly asked home care questions and answers, along with links to additional resources. As always, the best way to get specific answers address your specific situation is by scheduling a free, in-home assessment with licensed home care agencies in your area.
You may also want to use our Checklist to Caring for Aging Parents to run down some of the top considerations when creating a proactive, long-term senior care plan.
How much does home care cost?
This is a hard question for many people to ask because it feels strange to begrudge the money spent to care for the ones we love most. And, yet, the cost of home care is an extremely important factor when you need to find the most qualified services, for the most reasonable price. We completely understand financial concerns.
We can’t give you a specific figure about how much it will cost for your loved one’s services, because the cost relies entirely upon:
- Frequency of care
- Duration of stay
- Types of services required
National averages for six hours of home care, provided five days a week, run around $32,760, though this number will be higher in metropolitan areas. This is notably less than assisted living or nursing home options. Read, How Much Does Home Care Cost? for more information about care costs.
Also, if you are currently the primary caregiver, we also recommend, Getting Paid to Take Care of Elderly Parents, to learn more about whether or not you may qualify for financial assistance.
How do I know if my loved one really needs a caregiver?
It’s not always easy to tell, but we recommend erring on the earlier side of the decision-making crux. The alternative often means you’re in crisis (falls, bone breaks, terminal illness, etc.), which makes it harder to take the time required to find the right caregiver for you.
Visit, 5 Signs Your Aging Parents Need Help. If it resonates, it’s probably time.
Do you provide medical care?
Home care providers do not provide acute medical care assistance. We’re happy to provide medication reminders and to assist with position changes, transfers, bathing/grooming, toileting, and other personal care services – but we cannot provide direct medical care.
That said, caregivers often work in tandem with home health care providers to streamline costs for patients and families.
Read, Home Care vs. Home Health Care to learn more.
Can we choose the caregiver(s) who takes care of our loved one?
While clients can’t interview individual caregivers, we assure you we are very intentional with our caregiver placements. That’s why in-home assessments are so valuable. During that time, we learn as much as we can about the client, and then we work to match him/her with a caregiver who has the experience and the personality to match.
Our caregivers are thoroughly screened via complete background checks and references, and we provide continuous homecare-specific education and training.
What services do you provide?
Home care services revolve around the themes of companionship and personal care. We understand that no two individuals have the same needs, so caregivers provide tailored care for each unique set of circumstances.
Click here to read a list of our services, knowing services vary from agency-to-agency. If you require specific services, make a list and discuss them during your assessment or consultation.
What’s the minimum amount of services/hours required?
Home care agencies are extremely flexible. Caregivers can work for just a few hours, once per week, can visit at various times throughout the week, can stay overnight, or can be hired to provide live-in care.
Most agencies have a three to four-hour minimum for a single visit, but whether visits take place once per month, once per week, or daily is up to the client.
Are there backup caregivers available if the regular caregiver is ill or needs a day off?
Yes! That is one of the biggest advantages of hiring a caregiving agency, rather than hiring an individual caregiver on your own. We have caregivers who can take over for the regular caregiver’s sick days, personal days, or vacation time to keep the schedule consistent.
Can I hire a caregiver to give me/family caregivers a break, even if it’s a rarity?
Absolutely. That type of home care is called “respite care.” We can’t emphasize enough how important it is for family caregivers to take advantage of respite care services. After the initial assessment, we are available to schedule caregivers as you need them.
While some of our respite care clients use us once every great while, most find that respite care provides such peace of mind that they can reclaim a sense of normalcy again.
Respite care can be used to/for:
- Getting yourself to various appointments, both medical and self-care oriented
- Attending important events such as children’s games, school events, religious/spiritual services, holiday gatherings, etc.
- Taking a much-needed long weekend or week(s)-long vacation
- Establishing a once-weekly or monthly day to yourself, a day with family, or date night(s) with your significant other
How can I hire a caregiver if my parent refuses or denies s/he needs help?
This is such a tough situation, and our hearts go out to you. If you feel the denial or refusal is dementia-related, start by working with their healthcare provider. You may need to work through an advance directive and POA to keep the wheels moving so you can legally begin making decisions.
In most cases, a parent’s denial or refusal is rooted in fear of aging and dying. That requires a tremendous amount of patience and calm compassion as you work with them via honest conversation.
Read, How to Deal With Aging Parents Who Are in Denial, where we cover this topic more thoroughly.
Looking For More Home Care Questions And Answers?
Georgetown Home Care understands that the decision to explore home care services is one that often comes with a heavy heart. Our compassionate and highly-trained staff is here to answer all of your questions so that you can make a well-informed decision for you and your family’s future.