Home Health: Finding Hope for You and Your Loved One

Preparing For A Home Health Care Visit: Three Things To Consider

In-home health care can be a great benefit for your loved one, and it can help to relieve some of the burden you feel as a caregiver. If you are planning on having a home health care worker assist with your loved one's care, there are a few things you should to prepare for this transition. Use this guide to help prepare for your loved one's first visit.

Create An Emergency Contact List

Having an emergency contact list is essential if you won't be home for all of the visits. Place a list next to the landline phone in your home or on your refrigerator for easy reference, and be sure to include the name and number for your loved one's primary care physician. You'll also want to add your contact information and the names and numbers of any other family members who can respond to an emergency if you aren't available. You may also want to include a list of current medications on the list as well, as this may be needed if emergency medical personnel needs to be called to your home.

Schedule A Meet-And-Greet

Some people may be resistant to the idea of having a stranger in the home. Schedule a meet-and-greet for your loved one and the new health care worker so they can have a chance to get to know each other. You may also want to be present for the first few visits to help your relative feel more comfortable with the new care provider.

Discuss Expectations

There are many levels of care that home health care workers can provide. Be sure to discuss your expectations for care so everyone is on the same page. For example, if you want help with personal care, such as bathing and dressing, discuss this in advance with your loved one and the health aide. This will prevent confusion and possible frustration during the visits. Some health aides may offer some light housework, but this may be confined to tasks that relate to your loved one. This might mean that the health care aide will do laundry for your relative, but not for everyone in the home. Knowing what to expect in advance can help you to plan your time to provide the other services and care your loved one needs.

Consider discussing the home health care option with your loved one's primary care physician in advance, and ask for any advice about which types of care you might need for your relative. With some planning and preparation, you can ensure your loved one gets the care he or she needs, and you can enjoy a break from the regular routine of caregiving.