When the time comes to choose a home care provider, it can be handy to know what to look for and what questions to ask when researching for yourself, or for a loved one

27 January

Home care is the best option of support to enable your loved one to stay within the comfort of home, living independently. It’s an affordable alternative to a care home and without the stress of moving and leaving familiar surroundings, or even beloved pets.

When the time comes to choose a home care provider, it can be difficult as there are so many.  This is a guide on how to choose a home care provider; it also helps you have the right questions to ask, and know what to look for so you can choose a provider that will provide the quality of care that your loved one deserves.

Regulatory bodies for home care

Always ensure that the home care provider is registered with the relevant care regulator for their country:

Care regulators will regularly inspect the care provider to ensure that each provider is meeting their statutory requirements. You’ll be able to look up their latest inspection report on the regulators site.

Memberships and associations

Look for membership with organisations such as:

These are some of the professional associations of home care providers. They promote higher standards of care, and act as one voice for care providers to bring about changes in legislation and policy.

A good home care provider will be actively involved in contributing to the betterment of the social care system.

Experience

When looking at home care providers, it’s good to have an understanding of what experience they have, how long have they been operating for? If they’ve been around for a long time, they are likely to be a stable business that has adapted to the many changes in social care over the years.

Valuing home care workers

A good home care provider will value their home care workers, providing them with adequate training and support. Investment in care staff is important in ensuring that they’re happy and confident in their role.

Care staff should have regular supervision, annual refresher training, and be supported to gain health and social care qualifications.

Listening to customer and staff needs

A home care provider with an interest in improving and keeping in touch with what their customers and staff need and want will hold regular focus groups for customers and staff. This enables people to have a voice, not only in the delivery of their care but also in the policies and procedures that affect them.

Free home care assessment

A free home care assessment should always be provided, and be an obligation free offer as part of your decision making process and will usually include a risk assessment. This can help you get an idea of who you are letting into your home.

Care planning should take a person centred approach, which means listening to the unique needs and wishes of each individual customer.

Community involvement

A good home care provider will be actively involved in their community; what local charities do they support? Are they aware of other health and support organisations in the area and do they work alongside them to help their customers? They might host local coffee mornings to help more isolated people in the community feel more connected.

Find out more about Carewatch

If you would like to know more about your local Carewatch team, please get in touch. We are always happy to answer any questions you may have, and will be available to arrange a home care assessment for you.

Article by CarewatchCare