MYRA: Hello Loriann and Taylor! Thank you for helping us understand how a home health aid can assist in the care of a terminally ill person. As much as the family and loved ones of the dying person would want only the best care for their beloved, with our busy lifestyles, availability to provide that care can be challenging. Work, school, and a myriad of other responsibilities can make it very difficult to always be there. Can you please explain to our readers how your staff can help? HERE IS WHERE YOU COULD DISCUSS HOW YOUR STAFF CAN FILL IN THE GAPS.
TAYLOR/LORIANN: Thank you Myra for having us. Excited to be here and talk to you about this important subject! Our services at ComForCare help the family in so many aspects. As you said, with busy lifestyles, it is hard to juggle all the different responsibilities. The biggest way we can help is to provide respite care for family caregivers. Respite care allows the much-needed rest and mental break along with allowing the time to complete errands and other life tasks. It is very important to us that the family structure remains intact. We want the children to continue to be children to the loved ones and not the caregiver…
MYRA: As a person nears the end of life, there is a decrease in appetite. We know that a lack of nutrition causes fatigue and interferes with the body’s ability to heal. Becoming bedbound is a natural response and very common during this phase. While hospice services are great, we know that the daily care of the dying person is not a covered service. And although hospice staff are very helpful in teaching the family how to care for their beloved, this care does not come as second nature for any of us who are not in the healthcare field. Are your staff trained to provide bed care that prevents the common end of life problems like “bedsore”? FREQUENT REPOSITIONING, BED BATHS, ETC.
TAYLOR/LORIANN: Yes, our caregivers are assessed by a registered nurse to determine the competency of their skills. If the RN feels a skill is lacking, they train them on the proper procedure in our skills lab. We also have rigorous ongoing online training that the caregivers all have to complete to continue their education. Pressure ulcers, commonly known as bedsores, are a very common condition. Our caregivers are trained to identify, observe, and assess for signs of infection. They also monitor incontinence and prevent dehydration, among other things to prevent worsening symptoms. We also suggest the use of low air loss or air fluidized mattresses to reduce pressure in severe cases.
MYRA: When a person has a terminal health condition and chooses to not pursue curative measures, the care goal becomes “comfort care”. Can you please explain to our readers what that means? GROOMING, MASSAGING, FREQUENT MOUTH CARE, ETC.
TAYLOR/LORIANN: Yes the main purpose of our care is to provide assistance with activities of daily living. Examples of these include but are not limited to grooming, bed baths, feeding, dressing, medication reminders, etc. We also provide companionship. If the loved one is lonely, we have our caregivers provide comfort in companionship services. They can play the client’s favorite music/games, showing family picture albums, reminisce about their past, etc. This all circles back to respite care for the family caregivers, to give them a chance for a break.
Myra: In my book, “Dying Made Easy(er), I discuss many supportive services available to the dying person and loved ones. Working in this field for so many years, I can say that the discussion of the cost comes up often. In an effort to lower the cost of care, some families look for private caregivers. Can you explain why using the services of a home healthcare service such as yours is a better idea?
TAYLOR/LORIANN: When hiring a private caregiver, the family assumes all liability for injuries. If you hire a caregiver directly, the caregiver is really an “employee.” That exposes the family to all expenses, liabilities, and risks of having an employee. If the caregiver is hurt in the process of providing care, the family is legally liable for the caregiver’s damages. Hiring through ComForCare, liability is assumed by our insurance. We are licensed with the state of California, where they audit our business to ensure the quality of care and safety to client and caregiver. Our caregivers are all drug tested and undergo a criminal background check before being hired. As mentioned before, our caregivers are all trained and are assessed by the RN for skills competency.
MYRA: Once a family has decided to seek help with the care of their beloved, choosing a good home healthcare agency can be confusing. Can you help our readers know how to select a good one (hint; ComForCare)? What makes your company stand out?
TAYLOR/LORIANN: ComForCare has a 10 step hiring process, which ensures we hire the most qualified caregivers. Performing drug tests and background checks also ensure we are sending a safe person into the client’s home. We put ourselves in the client’s position, and if we wouldn’t want that person to care for our own loved one, we will not place them in your home either. At ComForCare, we care like family, as we strive to provide the best care with the best caregiver.