In-Home Health Care: How to Choose the Right Agency in Atlanta
At first glance, finding the best home care agency in Atlanta that fits your needs and budget can be completely overwhelming. However, it doesn’t have to be that way.
We’re outlining the basic standards that quality home care agencies should meet and giving you insight into the right questions to ask to evaluate providers.
In-Home Care Services: How to Find the Right One
The process of finding the right home health care services for an elderly loved one begins by taking stock of your loved one’s home care needs and assessing the appropriate level of care.
There are two types of in-home care services:
1. Home health care
2. Nonmedical home care
Many organizations provide both types of care, and there are also overlaps between home health care agencies and homemaker or companionship services.
In this article, we will focus on hiring non-medical home care services where families pay for them privately.
The next step is to start contacting in-home care service providers in your area. The initial interview process will give you a sense of the organization and staff and how things are run.
Request Cost Information
One of the biggest concerns families have is the cost of in-home care services. A qualified home health care agency will personalize the service plan accordingly and provide you with a quote for care.
Focus on the services you need and leave the discussion about the cost for services until later in the call.
Ask for a list of hourly rates as a reference. You can always fine-tune the service plan during a face-to-face conversation later on. Make note of their general policies regarding billing and payments.
The following questions will help you get the answers you need:
How much are your hourly rates?
What qualifications and certifications do your caregivers have?
How often will you send an invoice?
What types of payment do you accept?
Do you accept long-term care insurance and bill the insurance company directly?
Inquiring About Time Minimums for In-Home Care Services
The home health care agency you choose may have a minimum hourly requirement for home visits. Common minimums range between two and four hours.
These questions will help you plan for scheduling:
Evaluate how many hours you need
Affirm the minimum hours per visit
Ask how to adjust care hours to meet changes in needs
Types of In-Home Care Companies in Atlanta
In-home health care agencies may be independently owned or part of a franchise, and each has pros and cons.
Here are a few more tips:
Franchises have stronger branding and advertising plans
Franchises must rely on the brand for policies and procedures and pricing models
Independent agencies establish their own policies, training protocols, and pricing plans
Choose a Home Care Agency that Is Licensed, Bonded, & Insured
Be sure the agency is properly licensed and is in compliance with state laws.
Another important factor is to affirm that the agency bonds its employees and ask the value of their bonds. Bonding is a form of insurance for the agency in case a caregiver gets accused of theft. Knowing the agency has taken this step should give you peace of mind.
Don’t be hesitant to ask for a copy of the agency’s insurance declaration page as proof of coverage.
What Are the Caregiver Hiring and Training Procedures?
All states don’t require education or training for nonmedical service providers, so ensure the agency conducts background checks and drug screenings on their caregivers.
States may require background checks on CNAs and HHAs. It’s a good idea to ask if home care agencies check the state’s registry to verify their prospective employees’ licensing and certifications, as well as complaints.
Finally, check out the agency’s reputation. Ask your medical providers, neighbors, friends, and other people you trust for feedback on their experiences with an agency. Another way to check out an agency’s reputation is by checking out online consumer reviews and ratings.
Choosing the right in-home care services is one of the most important decisions you will make. If you are looking for quality in-home care services in Atlanta, contact Medi-Cure today at (770) 755-1394!