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5 Skills to Look for in a Home Caregiver

Elderly Woman and Female Caregiver

There may be a time when you or a loved one need the assistance of a home care professional, an aide who can watch over and even provide basic medical care for someone who cannot safely live alone.

If your loved one would prefer to remain in the privacy and comfort of their home rather than move into a senior living center, then a home care aide may be necessary. But unless you have many years of experience with home care, you may wonder how to find someone who’s trustworthy and qualified enough to care for your loved one.

This simple guide can help you make the right choice. These are the top 5 skills to look for in a home caregiver before you hire them.

Compassion

Compassionate care is essential when working with the elderly and/or disabled. Compassion helps aides to understand when their patients are in pain or uncomfortable. Also, compassionate care can help your loved one still feel a sense of pride and independence. Your home caregiver should understand the personal struggle that comes with being mobility limited, or otherwise needing professional assistance. Approaching the role with compassion helps your loved one feel truly cared for out of kindness and respect, not just for the money.

Professionalism

At the same time, home care professionals should treat their role with dignity and diligence. The best home care aides will be professional, and that means being focused, maintaining professional boundaries, and being competent enough to know how to respond in the event of an emergency. When it comes to working with the elderly or disabled, care should be put into everyday tasks like how and when they take certain medications. A truly professional home care aide will take their role very seriously.

Medical Knowledge

Good home care aides will undergo medical training, and will be under the oversight of a registered nurse and physician team. Medical knowledge is essential for home care because a competent aide will recognize signs of an emergency like a heart attack or stroke. They can also help prevent serious drug interactions, help your loved one stick to a healthy diet, and offer advice when your loved one has a complaint like knee pain.

Elderly Woman and Male Caregiver

Trustworthiness

When you invite someone to provide home care for your loved one, you essentially invite them to be part of the family. After all, a home care aide can provide personal care, companion care, or even a full spectrum of care to help your loved one be safe in their home environment. This is a vital task, and a lack of trust can prevent people from leaving care for loved ones in anyone else’s hands. Use your instincts when you meet a potential home care aide. Do they seem trustworthy? Do they work for a company that has a great reputation in the community?

Attention

Finally, a good home care aide should be able to provide attentive services to your loved one. They should be personally invested in getting to know your loved one, understand the level of companionship that they want and need, and develop a friendly bond with them. Being attentive makes your loved one feel cared for and understood, and with a good level of attention comes ample communication between patient and aide. Attentive communication between an aide and their superiors, as well as aide to patient, ensures the highest level of care for your loved one.

If you’re looking for qualified home care in NYC for your loved one, contact Oyster Bay Senior campus. Our medical team and home care aides have a reputation for providing skilled care for seniors in New York.

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