Hiring an Aide: Home Care Agency or “Gray Market?”
Most older people who cannot live alone prefer to remain in their homes. That makes sense; it is where their things are, where they know the neighbors and where their memories are based. Staying in their own homes is also a way to feel as if they are still somewhat independent. If your loved one needs companionship or assistance in daily living activities, you might be thinking about running an ad for an aide, or calling a person recommended by a friend. After all, is there any solid reason to use a home care agency? To answer that question, you need to consider several things.
Can you trust that someone you hire from the “Gray Market” will be trained in elder care? Will they know how to assist your loved one in standing or in walking to prevent falls? Will they know what to do if a fall occurs?
Will the person you hire be willing to do all the things your loved one requires?
Will they be loyal to you and guard your privacy?
Can you trust their integrity? Is your loved one, and her possessions, secure with the aide?
What will you do if the aide “calls off” or wants to go on vacation? How easy will it be to get a replacement?
What kind of expertise or training does the aide have in working with people with impaired abilities or memory?
Can the “Gray Market” aide be relied upon to know when a higher level of care is required? Will you be able to change from the aide to a nurse or nursing assistant readily?
Hiring from the “Gray Market” may seem less costly, but you cannot put a price on peace of mind. You need to know that your loved one is healthy, happy and not a victim of neglect or elder abuse. Hiring a certified home care aide from a home care agency may be far less expensive in the long run, when you consider that there is someone standing behind her, ensuring that she ( or he) will give your loved ones the care and attention they deserve.
If you are considering getting in home care for someone you love, contact us. We understand how much getting the right care matters.