When hiring any employee, it takes time, consideration and background research to find the right fit. But when hiring a caregiver, who will tend to an individual alone at home, the stakes are critical and it is paramount to choose carefully.
In her presentation, Choosing a Caregiver, Heather McGhie, director of HomeCare by RVNA, outlines the different types of caregivers in the field, as well as what to ask and look for when you’re hiring. “There are thousands of home health aides and CNAs (certified nursing assistants) in the state,” says McGhie, “but not all are equally qualified. Without a thorough national background check, drug screen, driving record check and without a legitimate company behind them, you are hiring at great risk.”
Following are some important questions to ask and consider when you are choosing a caregiver.
Who is the caregiver’s employer?
Is the caregiver private, hired through a registry, or an employee of a company like HomeCare by RVNA? This answer will have important implications regarding your responsibilities – like taxes and workers’ compensation – as well as your recourse in the event of a problem. It will also be a hint to the level of background checks and the amount of training and education the caregiver receives.
Essentially, with private caregivers as well as registries, you are the employer and are responsible as such. Typically, private caregivers and registries do not perform as rigorous background checks as an employer does.
What background checks are performed?
The extent and quality of background checks varies tremendously, so it’s important to understand exactly what is included in a potential candidate’s background check.
Ideally, you want it all — Insured and bonded, a national background check (including criminal, civil and sex offender), DMV record checks, drug screens and e-verification (confirming legal to work in US).
What are the caregiver’s credentials and what kind of education and training do they receive?
Is the potential candidate a Certified Home Health Aide or a CNA – a certified nursing assistant? What kind of orientation, training and ongoing education does the caregiver receive to stay current? Is there a nurse on staff at the company they work for? All of these elements make a difference in the quality of caregiver you get. You want a caregiver who is educated, trained, current and strongly supported by the company they work for.
To learn more, please join Heather McGhie, director of HomeCare by RVNA, at an upcoming Choosing a Caregiver presentation, contact us at HomeCare by RVNA or visit our website.
Upcoming Choosing a Caregiver presentations: