Demand for aides and caregivers is increasing in the home care and home health care industries. Mix that with a shortage of health care workers, and it makes for rude awakenings in the health care labor.
Health care reform makes staffing shortages worse, because it's focus is value-based; prevention and team-based care, led by primary care practitioners.
Who will take care of our growing (and growing more) aging seniors who don't have the privilege of prevention?
Medicare covers the entire population age 65 and up, an estimated 32 million people who need more healthcare services. Yet, with the Affordable Care Act, the focus is on prevention and primary care, which doesn't help older adults very much since many (but not all) find it's too late for preventative measures.
Here are the Facts:
- 26.9% of people 65+ have diabetes - American Diabetes Association,
- 5.2 million have Alzheimer's disease (200,000 less than 65) Alzheimer's Association,
- 9% have Osteoporosis - CDC,
- 40% of 70+ have a form of heart disease - National Academy on Aging Society,
- 80% of older adults have one chronic condition - CDC
As career paths of experienced health and medical professionals move towards an emphasis on primary care. who will care for the older adults living with chronic illnesses?
There are many home care and home health care agencies who provide well-qualified aides and professional caregivers. Continue reading to learn how to select the best service that matches your needs. As you research senior care agencies, be sure to check out our home care directory.
The Joint Commission, an independent, not-for-profit organization, accredit and certifies more than 20,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. Joint Commission accreditation and certification recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects an organization's commitment to meeting certain performance standards.
The Private Duty Home care Association (PDHCA) established by the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC), is a trade association of home care providers dedicated to helping the ill and disabled remain at home.
When hiring a home care agency, consider if they're accredited and certified by either the Joint Commission or the Private Duty Home Care Association. Both recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects commitment to certain performance standards.
These standards imply that home care organizations directly employ home care aide staff, been in operation for at least one year, and handled a minimum of 25 cases at the time of application. All home care aide services in an organization must apply for accreditation at the same time.
The home care organization must have qualified professionals on staff to give assessment, care planning, and supervision and maintain compliance with the standards and procedures and pay accreditation fees annually.
Home health aides and professional caregivers help people with a disability, chronically ill, or cognitively impaired. They assist older adults who need help, at home or in another care setting.
In a few states, home health aides give patients medication or check their vital signs under with direction from a nurse or another health care practitioner.
It's important that aides receive training and skills that apply to the job.
Here's a checklist of questions to ask providers. Plan to ask family, friends, and your medical health staff for references.
Get a list of references from the provider:
Contact references and ask: