One of the most rewarding and sometimes challenging aspects of my position here at VIP America is when I’m given the opportunity to meet with a family or potential client to complete a new client assessment. Sometimes the transition into Home Care is quite smooth. All the members involved, (potential client, spouse, family, health professionals, friends etc.) are on the same page and the assessment is completed and care instituted swiftly and without hiccup.
Other times a call will come into our Intake/Insurance specialist in which the initial inquiry into home care is made with trepidation and great concern. The free assessment is scheduled and I find myself meeting with a potential client and their family member(s) who has only just found out that they may be receiving home care or in some cases have no idea why I’m there at all. In this instance, when the idea of home care or additional help is suddenly sprung on the individual the transition into receiving assistance in their home does not always go quite as smoothly.
Here are 5 tips to help out those who find themselves in the position to introduce the idea of home health care to a loved one:
- Stay calm, cool, & collected – If you’re frazzled, they’re going to be frazzled. Make sure your energy and attitude is as calm. This does not need to be a bad change or a negative experience!
- Gather information & explore your options. – There is no “one size fits all” home health care plan. Each client we service has a care plan as unique as their needs. We specialize in a wide variety of diagnoses, (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson, Dementia, disabled adults, diabetic patients, cognitive impairments, Multiple Sclerosis, etc.) Call our intake nurse to discuss what type of schedule and what level of care would work for your loved one. Some clients only need occasional homemaker/companion services while others may need daily assistance with their personal care. Your loved one will have lots of questions and uncertainties and they will feel more confident if they feel you’re committed to helping them explore their options.
- Allow them to express their emotions – Remember you’ve had time to process this potential change. This may be the first time this has even crossed their minds. They will be likely to feel a wide range of emotions. This isn’t an easy transition for most people at first but it is so very beneficial and often a very positive experience in the long run. Especially if your loved one is suffering from a neurological disease such as Alzheimer’s, Dementia or Parkinson’s. So much is changing in their lives and they are prone to be much more fearful and emotional than they would typically be.
- Don’t argue – If your loved one is not responding in a positive manner, don’t make matters worse by arguing with them. Refrain from phrases like “We have no other choice.” Or “This is what we have to do now.” Also do not use threats such as “If you want to stay at home…” or “If you don’t do this then I won’t be able to help you anymore.” You’re trying to help your loved one understand that this is for their betterment and to aide them in maintain a quality life at home. Instead walk away and try to approach the subject again at a later time.
- This is to assist you, not control you! – So many times there is the misconception that home care is being instituted to take over the individuals daily care. This could not be further from the truth. I often have to remind the potential client and their families many times that we are here to ASSIST in daily care activities. We are not task masters that come in and introduce new routines or methods in which a person may conduct their day to day life. The caregivers are there so that the client can stay in their own home, amongst familiar faces and surroundings for as long as possible.
VIP America Home Health Care has been referring quality caregivers for home health services in Ft. Myers, and in the Southeast and Southwest coasts of Florida since 1997. We offer complimentary, in-home, assessments to discuss and explore all your home care options. Call us today to see how we can help you and/or your loved one!