Caring for your aging parents can be emotionally and physically taxing. Between managing daily routines, organizing appointments and providing specialized medical support, there may be precious little time left in your week for care for your own needs. Companion agencies provide a wide variety of services to elderly clients. Companion agencies may offer in-home nursing care, daily living assistance or volunteer support for extracurricular activities. If you are considering a companion agency for your parents, be sure to ask the right questions so that everyone understands what to expect from the arrangement.
What services do your companions provide?
Some agencies employ trained staff who are able to provide medical support services while other companion agencies are run by volunteers who are better suited for daily living assistance or running errands. Prepare of list of the needs your parents have to present to the companion agency representative. The companion agency should be able to tell you which services they are able t provide.
Are your companions first aid certified?
Every companion agency should provide caregivers that have some basic medical training. Even if it is unlikely that you parents will ever need medical attention, knowing that they are with a certified companion may offer you valuable peace of mind.
How is a companion selected?
Many companion agencies are short staffed, and may rely on a constantly shifting workforce. Most agencies match clients with whatever companions are available at the time. However, an agency may be willing to specially pair your parents with a companion if your parents have special medical needs or particular interests.
Will my parent have the same companion for the duration of the arrangement?
Most reputable companion agencies try to keep clients with the same companion. Consistency helps build meaningful relationships between companions and clients, which contributes to an improved quality of life for all involved parties.
What are our payment options?
Specialty agencies or private agencies that work with nurses or in home care specialty may charge a one time fee or a per visit fee. Ask the representative if there are alternative payment options available such as sliding scale fees. Depending on your needs, there is always a perfect option for you and your family.