In the first of our blogs we asked 3 questions you should ask when choosing a home care company, such as Visiting Angels Burton & Derby. Now we need ask a few questions about the person who will be providing the support, namely the caregiver. You need to ask these questions in order to feel relaxed when being supported.
Question 1. How does the company select their employees ?
A reputable company will have robust recruitment processes to make sure they recruit “fit and proper” persons. Ask questions that enable you to assess whether the company has chosen a person that is trustworthy, respectful, kind and is likely to always treat you or your loved one with dignity. Does the home care company do any kind of personality profiling? It is important to ask, how do they check their employees right to work in the UK? What background checks they do to verify the suitability of their employees ? A passport for British citizens will prove they can work in the UK. An Enhanced DBS will make sure they can work with vulnerable Adults and have no criminal record. Reference checks, a minimum of 2 but good practice is 4, will help determine their work ethic and character. Ask if you will be receiving carers from overseas. What background checks do they do to guarantee the carer is a “fit and proper” person.
Question 2: What training do the caregivers get before they are allowed to provide support and care?
Look for at least 4 days of initial mandatory training , that includes medication management , infection control, moving and handling people. Is it face to face or on-line. Do they get on-going training e.g. dementia, catheter care, stoma care, Alzheimer’s, end of life etc. Who is giving the training, is it an internal person or do they rely on virtual trainers. At Visiting Angels Burton & Derby our Registered Manager, carries out the initial training, this allows her to assess if the individual caregiver actually understands what is being taught.
Question 3: Does the company validate their employees competency over time?
After the initial training, how does the company validate consistency in care standards? What checks in the “field” do they do and how often. A reputable company will check frequently e.g. at least every 3 months, by doing it this way, they will be sure of maintaining standards and you can be sure of consistent and continuous care