Home Care Checklist

What to Ask When Hiring an In-Home Care Agency
checklist

When it's time to select an in-home care provider for your loved one, you'll want to do your homework. Start by reading reviews in the Caring.com In-Home Care Directory, and plan to talk to at least two providers so you can compare them and make sure you've found the right fit. Ask to speak to the agency owner or manager to get the most thorough answers.

A good in-home care provider will be easy to talk to, will understand your family's unique needs, and will be ready to answer any questions you may have. Use this checklist to start the conversation -- and be sure to take detailed notes as you go.

Print the In-Home Care Agency Checklist now

The Basics

These questions will help you determine if the agency is legitimate and operating above board.

The Care Staff

  • Do your care workers receive regular immunizations for influenza, hepatitis B, tuberculosis, and other communicable illnesses?

    SEE ALSO: Find In-Home Care Help Near You

    Ask to see documentation.

  • How do you screen your care workers?

    Ask for specifics. It's best if the agency runs a national, fingerprint-based background check for all workers, along with checks on references, credit history, and driving record, plus drug screenings and checks against sexual offender databases.

  • What training do you provide?

    Ask for details. Training can differ greatly, from sessions with an outside expert to a quick online course.

    SEE ALSO: Find In-Home Care Help Near You

  • How do you retain great employees?

    Ongoing training, paid vacation, and medical benefits can all help a company attract and keep the best staff members.

  • What supervision do you provide?

    Ask specifically whether there are nurses or social workers on staff to provide support and advice to the care workers.

  • Can we interview different care workers and choose which one we'll work with?

    SEE ALSO: Find In-Home Care Help Near You

Paying for Services

  • What do you charge?

    Make sure to ask if there are any additional charges or fees that might apply in your situation.

  • Do you accept payment from insurance companies?

  • Do you offer a payment plan or other types of financial assistance? Do you accept credit cards?

  • Are your care workers employees or independent contractors?

    Ask if the agency will take care of all payroll paperwork (including taxes, insurance, or benefits), or if that will be your responsibility.

Working out the Details

These questions can help you narrow your list from a few agencies you like to the one you like best.

  • What kind of service agreement is required?

  • Do you have guidelines or standards of conduct for your care workers?

    Ask to see a copy.

  • Do you have consistent assignments, or will the care workers change on a regular basis?

    Consistency is especially important for someone with dementia.

  • What happens if my normal care worker is sick or on vacation?

    Ask if the agency will automatically send a replacement.

  • What happens if my normal care worker leaves the agency?

    An agency should be able to provide consistent care even during staff transitions.

  • How do you handle conflicts between a care worker and a client?

  • Am I expected to provide meals for the care workers we hire?

  • Can your employees drive my loved one to appointments or social outings?

    If so, ask what, if any, mileage charges apply.

  • Can I talk to former or current clients?


over 1 year ago, said...

Very good list of questions, concise, thorough. Thank you.


over 1 year ago, said...

I forgot to add that I am on medi-medi and hope I can find someone to help.


over 1 year ago, said...

You covered questions that I did not think of, and probably would have wanted to know. I have had terrible experience with caregivers and because I get so sick sometimes I really need someone that is understanding and not so immature my. former cg would complain about cleaning , such as a bathroom or dusting you name it. They would break things and not tell me about them. I sent a letter to the agency , never heard back even after calling and leaving messages numerous times, they just dropped me, and I have had so much added stress due to not having a care giver, Thank You.


about 2 years ago, said...

THANKS YOU


over 2 years ago, said...

yes it did. but I don't know we can pay for the help.


over 2 years ago, said...

Thank you!


over 2 years ago, said...

specific helpful details


over 2 years ago, said...

Very informative. Thank you


over 2 years ago, said...

I do not want to ever be put anywhere. I do not want to be in need of a care taker.I dread losing my freedom. I want employees who answer to me.; not care givers. I dread becoming helpless and dependent. However, I know I must prepare for the worst just in case. I wish I could avoid ending up like some of my precious friends who were miserable and unsafe in very beautiful looking extremely expensive independent living(so called) and or assisted living. I wish there were some way to avoid the problems they had. I do have limited long term care insurance, and i want to do the best I can. However, it seems that all the old age facilities both expensive


over 2 years ago, said...

would like to know info


over 2 years ago, said...

I would like to see a video of what this type of care provides


over 2 years ago, said...

Offered me help and information on important areas that I had not thought of, i.e., "did my thinking for me" ~ Thank you!


almost 3 years ago, said...

Knowing what to ask.


almost 3 years ago, said...

Informative


almost 3 years ago, said...

Recently a friend I discovered she'd signed a co-signer obligation for her friends home health care. That agency is now calling her regarding late payment and is turning the matter over to a collection agency. The lady who used the service is quite ill and has been unable to make the payment on time. What recourse does my friend have?


almost 3 years ago, said...

The questions I should ask was wonderful.


about 3 years ago, said...

Hi I'm looking for a facilities that need hair care with salon.


about 3 years ago, said...

Hello Caregiver29, We believe that sharing your opinions helps caregivers, just like you, make better choices. If you ever feel inclined to write a review of the care provider you are using, visited, or interviewed, you can do so at http://www.caring.com/review_submissions/new?utm_source=community. Thanks!


about 3 years ago, said...

I like Americas Home Direct Care Consultants. The manager is very friendly, informative and transparent. He answered all my questions and their data base of Independents are extensive. Excellent program for those who are looking for autonomy in your home aide. Good supervision and security. BR


about 3 years ago, said...

How is it finance


about 3 years ago, said...

Check out Hallmark Homecare. www.hallmarkhomecare.com This initiative homecare model is safe and will save you money when hiring in-home care for your love ones. The reason you're able to save so significantly with our direct-hire model of care is that we cut out the middleman (namely, the agencies) so the caregiver works directly for you, without short-changing you on the vital steps that ensure the delivery of safe, quality in-home care.


about 3 years ago, said...

These articles were very enlightening. I'm learning more as I get into the disease farther. Keep up the good work.


about 3 years ago, said...

Hello Everyone, Caring.com has a Senior Directory that assist in locating adult day services as well as in-home care and housing options. To locate a provider near you: http://www.caring.com/local Rosa at Caring.com


about 3 years ago, said...

i want to find out if there are senior day care facilities near 01301 -- so home care families can drop off elders (dementia, ambulatory, no incontinence) ? How close is the nearest site? thanks


about 3 years ago, said...

Looking for Nursing Homes. NOT IN HOME CARE.


about 3 years ago, said...

Questions to consider...there is always something that a person forgets in interviewing................


over 3 years ago, said...

Some of the information was helpful. But was wondering what I need to do so that my insurance covers the costs.. That was not explained..


over 3 years ago, said...

I note ts do not mention nursing care. We are only interesteed in nnursing care. If that is not provided by your agency , and you can refer us to an agency that does , we would appreciate it. Alos we need 24 hr. nursing care and the first answer question we need answered is a price for such care for too higha price would make alll other questions moot.


over 3 years ago, said...

Hello, If you are looking for the Home Care Agency Interview Checklist you can find it at: http://www.caring.com/checklists/questions-for-agency-home-care-worker-1 Hope that helps! Thanks


over 3 years ago, said...

The questions to ask the agencies


over 3 years ago, said...

All of it. I would not of thought to ask half of these questions.


over 3 years ago, said...

I'd not even thought about all of the insurance paperwork. Thanks for the heads up!


over 3 years ago, said...

This is such a well-done article , I'am copying it for our friend and her family. Also keeping one for myself , for my own information down the road. Thank you so much ! Kindest Regards, Penne Girl ..................


over 3 years ago, said...

My parents live Friendswood, Tx. My dad is 75 and suffering with Antimeres .My mom takes care of him, but she really needs help with him.my mom is bipolar, She crys all the time, im the beneficiary.I live in Kingsville,Tx , which is four hours away.I was thinking this is not going to last long, vary dysfunctional. Can you give me some feedback


over 3 years ago, said...

The common sense approach with short and to the point questions some of which may could be overlooked.


over 3 years ago, said...

Hello rxadmore, Caring.com has a list of In-Home Care Providers at http://www.caring.com/home-care) on our website in which you can search by zipcode. Many of the in-home care providers are reviewed by others who have used the service or have had someone they know use their services. We believe that sharing your opinions helps caregivers, just like you, make better choices. Caring.com has team of Family Advisors can help evaluate your situation based on budget and needs and direct you to the housing options as well (e.g assisted living, independent living). If you would like to speak to a Family Adviser, they can be reached at 866-824-8174. I hope you find this information helpful. If you need additional support or resources, please let us know. Thank you!


over 3 years ago, said...

who d you recommend for home care in postal code 14150?


over 3 years ago, said...

list of thing to ask.


over 3 years ago, said...

Detail of the questions and specific follow- ups