Tips for Choosing a Caregiver for an Elder


Do you have an elder family member who shows signs of needing assistance? Hiring a caregiver could be the answer, especially if the patient doesn’t want to move into a retirement home. The big question is: how do I choose the care provider? It may take some time, but following these tips, you’ll find the perfect fit.

#1- Look for someone you know you can trust

If you have a friend or an acquaintance that works with a caregiver, consider asking them to give you the professional’s number. Another good option is going for a neighbour you have frequent interactions with and who consider to be a potentially good caretaker. Your last resource is a family member because being your sister’s or uncle’s employer will certainly create some sort of conflict.

#2- Make sure the candidate has the specialty required

If the patient has some sort of disease or physical disability that may require special attention, look for a caregiver who has professional experience in the field or, at least, some degree of experience with similar patients.

#3- Ask about cooking skills

If the person taking care of your family member will be working during meal hours, it’s always convenient to hire someone who can prepare a palatable and hearty meal. Plus, you can ask him or her to freeze meals for later which will make life much easier for your elder family member and you.

#4- Require personal and work references

This is a must, especially if the candidates contacted you through a job offer, because they are complete strangers! Once you call the reference contacts, ask them about the professionalism of the candidates.

#5- Find out what are the needs of the elder patient

Does the patient need skilled services that only a nurse can provide? Is it just a mobility issue? Does the elder person feel lonely and would like companionship? Look for someone who complies with the necessary requirements.

#6- Try to get to know your candidate

Caregivers aren’t just robots, they’ll be at the patient’s home for hours, so they will inevitably interact with the patient. Because of this, try to ask some normal questions to your potential care provider to see if they would be compatible.

#7- Hold the interview with the elder person

In this way, you’ll both be able to get to know the care provider. This job interview is all about asking the right questions, besides, the patient is the one who has to feel truly comfortable with the caregiver.

#8- Explain all the tasks that come with the job

When in the interview, tell the candidate all the services he or she will have to do, especially if they are difficult or require previous experience. For instance, some older adults need to be bathed, so the care provider will need to be strong enough to lift weight. Other patients use a catheter, so the bag will have to be emptied every few hours.

Hopefully, with these tips you’ll be able to find the perfect caregiver for your family member to feel supported and comfortable with.