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5 Tips for Selecting a Home Care Agency

Providing care for a loved one is a huge responsibility. As our loved ones age or circumstances warrant, it may be increasingly important to invest wisely in supplementary care. It is even more daunting when you have to consider a home care agency.  

When preparing to make the decision to hire someone to care for your loved ones, whether it is home care agency, day care or assisted living community, you have to evaluate specific needs and find a suitable match. Here are 5 important tips to consider when choosing a home care agency:

1. Trust your instincts

Beyond delivering competent care, your home care agency must be one that makes you feel secure and comfortable. There are early signs that are clear during the intake. The individual that completes the assessment is usually the first person you meet and is representative of the agency. That person should act with compassion, patience and kindness. A good agency should lessen the burden not increase the stress of finding care for your loved one.

2. Ensure the agency is licensed, insured and bonded.

A home care agency should be reputable and licensed with their respective state and follow its regulations. The United States Department of Human and Health Services can provide useful information online regarding home health agencies.

3. Provide experienced caregivers. 

Choose an agency that understands and provides the services you need. Caregivers should be experienced in providing those services. They are specially trained, reliable, respectful and sensitive to your situation. Inquire about background checks and verify references

4. Deliver a written plan of care

The plan of care is a written document that sets the expectations a caregiver must follow. Family members should be involved in creating and reviewing a plan of care for their loved one. Make certain you express expectations for daily care and services.

5. Understand the Cost of Care 

There are several ways to pay for home-care services. Most non-medical home care is private pay or covered by long term care insurance. In some instances non-medical home care may be paid through Medicare, Medicaid, or some other public programs; such as veteran aid and attendance benefits. Outside assistance with paying for home care-services is generally limited and usually covers only short-term home health care needs.

It is essential for our loved ones to experience joy under the care of a home health agency. We hope these tips will give primary caregivers a sense of peace as they secure supportive care for their family members.

Written by Nicole Kennedy

Nicole KennedyNicole Kennedy, a native New Orleanian with the heart the size of Texas, has been a caregiver all of her life. She is the owner and operator of Carebuilders at Home located in Spring, Texas. Nicole is a graduate of the University of New Orleans located in New Orleans, Louisiana, where she received a BS and a MS in Geophysics.

After graduation, Nicole moved to Houston, Texas to launch her career as a Geophysicist. She began her professional career in 2000 with Kerr-McGee oil and gas which later merged with Anadarko Petroleum.  In her role as a Geophysicist, she was able to fortify her previous organization as a leader in the petroleum industry. As a proven oil and gas finder, she managed countless projects and was also charged with helping to develop the talents of others through support and coaching. It was in the capacity as a mentor and coach that she strengthened her passion for caring for others. This is what led her to walking out on faith and starting her own organization to provide personal care to those in need. In 2016, she became the owner and operator of CareBuilders at Home. CareBuilders at HomeAt CareBuilders at Home, Nicole and her team of trusted caregivers provide companion care, care after hospitalization, and assistance with activities of daily living.

When Nicole is not working, she is volunteering at Northwest Assistance Ministries or attending church at St Paul United Methodist in the Old Town Spring Heights Community.  She is also a proud supporter of Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure and Alzheimer’s Association. Nicole is an active sports mom and enjoys spending time with her family. She likes reading, travelling, watching movies with her daughter and football with her son.

  1. Nicole, I really appreciate your tips for choosing a home care provider for a loved one. I like how you stated that an agency should specialize in the services that your loved one needs. My parents want to hire a home care service for my grandma, so I will be sure to pass all of your tips along to them.

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