When your aging parents start having health issues, you get affected as well. From worrying about their safety to if they are getting the right treatment, you will find it difficult to focus on your personal life. Since most people rarely take their parents to institutions for the elderly, the need for private nurses or caregivers has increased.
A study shows that the growth in the population of elderly people who need to be catered for, has led to an increase in the number of people who pay for long-term care services – from 13 million (as at the year 2000) to 27 million in the year 2050. This shows that the demand for private nurses will also rise. Therefore, here are tips for getting a private nurse for your aging parents.
What Nursing Services are Available
When looking the right care for your elderly parents, the services available depends on what you need.
Old people’s home care services are provided by certain nursing agencies and health care organizations that offer a wide range of medical assistance within a particular facility. From physical therapy to medication and social services that help frail individuals feel better, you will need to find out if they provide the type of care your parents need.
On the other hand, private home care is best for elderly people who need companionship, someone to help prepare their meals and bath them, help with daily activities like house chores and other forms of personal care – within their own home.
A nurse from Gifted Health Care – an agency that provides private nursing services – stated that “the cost of getting home care vary, depending on the agency and if you want additional services.
Some people pay from their own purse, while there are private insurance companies that take care of the cost for their clients”.. She further stated that volunteer organizations also cater for the elderly but if you want to get really good service, hiring a private nurse is best for you.
Benefits of Getting a Private Nurse
If you’re hiring from an agency, you can be rest assured that they will likely get the best nurses, in order to provide quality service and maintain a good reputation. If a nurse is sick, you can get an instant substitute. They also provide you with personnel that have a variety of skills to meet any of your specific needs – be it occupational therapy, physiotherapy, and so on.
Some agencies get support from non-governmental organizations and even the government, so fees can be subsidized.
Other providers give you the opportunity to choose which attendant you want to come take care of your parents, the payment plan that suits your budget and the work schedule you feel is best for your parents. Furthermore, when something goes wrong (like theft, wrong medication, assault etc) you know where to go to, – and you can even sue when necessary.
What to Consider when getting a Private Nurse
You wouldn’t want to get private nursing services based on what works for you. Putting your parents’ needs and opinions into consideration goes a long way in making the process a lot easier. However, there are some things to keep in mind so you don’t make a wrong choice.
If you need an agency to provide for personal care like dressing, eating, use of toilet and bathing, then ask for those services. Household chores like laundry, cleaning and cooking can also be included. When the nurse arrives, it’s advisable to make a copy of their driver’s license if your parents will be needing transportation assistance. If you aren’t satisfied enough, you can as well check their driving record with the necessary authorities.
Health and emotional care are always the most important. From health monitoring, therapy, doctor’s appointments and help with medication to companionship and meaningful social activities, you can ask for a nurse who’s willing to handle these responsibilities.
Run a Background Check
Conducting a background check to find out if the preferences and values of the private nursing service provider aligns with yours and those of your parents is important. If you prefer a nurse that speaks your language, one that has worked in the LGBT community or that has taken care of a war veteran, make your request and include the specifications. Some parents may prefer a female or male carer, take that into consideration as well.
“It’s okay to be picky with your preference. It’s better to have a private nurse you and your parents feel comfortable with, than make do with one that your instincts don’t accept,” the Gifted Health Care nurse suggested.
She further added that if you feel a professional might take advantage of your family emotionally, financially, and even physically, you can request that the provider runs a background check – or better yet conduct yours.
Monitoring the Care Service
Paying for a private nursing service means that you will also want to get value for your money. You wouldn’t want nurses that can’t address the tasks you paid for. Make a detailed list of job descriptions, ensure that you focus on the overall aim of getting a nurse and you can review it with the health care provider – before the attendant arrives.
If you have a CCTV camera to monitor what goes on in your home when you’re away, it helps a great deal. However, do not invade the privacy of the nurse.
Finally, be sure to follow these tips if you’re okay with having a new person in your home. Make sure your parents are fine with the adjustments as well. What matters most is seeing that your parents are happy and you can go on with other activities in your life.