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Interviewing care agency

Lesley_A

New member
Jul 6, 2020
9
Hi need to get private carers in to help with mum during sun downing time from 4 to 6 pm what shd I expect from private carers coming in and what questions do I ask them. Help never done this before
 

Rosettastone57

Registered User
Oct 27, 2016
1,346
Hi @Lesley_A my mother in law had private carers for three years . My experience is that a care manager came out to assess my mother in law , I was present , to see what was needed. In my case, my mother in law was on her own in her own property and didn't want carers in the first place. As I had LPA over her finances I could sort out the payments with the agency direct and I made sure that mother in law never knew how much they cost. The agency wore uniforms and I wanted to know that they would wear them and some sort of ID when on their calls. You will need to tell them what you expect the carers to do for 2 hours. Do you want them to prompt medications ? or prepare meals or just sit and chat? Do light housework? You need to be clear as I suspect your mum won't have a clue especially if she is agitated.
You should get a written care plan , in my case it was all done on line via an app which mother in law didn't see. You also need to be upfront as to your mum's condition and how she may react with carers . If she is sundowning , they will need to know the best way to occupy her and I provided a list of her interests and dislikes . My mother in law didn't sundown initially so her carers were more for meal preparation, so others will be along soon with their experience of sundowning.
 

Lemondrizzle

Registered User
Aug 26, 2018
76
Rosettastone's explanation is spot on. The other thing to consider is how will the carers get in. Initially MIL's carers would ring the bell and only let themselves in using the key safe keys if they got no answer. Once the door had to be locked to keep MIL safe from wandering, they would just let themselves in but call out as they did so.
 

Lesley_A

New member
Jul 6, 2020
9
Hi @Lesley_A my mother in law had private carers for three years . My experience is that a care manager came out to assess my mother in law , I was present , to see what was needed. In my case, my mother in law was on her own in her own property and didn't want carers in the first place. As I had LPA over her finances I could sort out the payments with the agency direct and I made sure that mother in law never knew how much they cost. The agency wore uniforms and I wanted to know that they would wear them and some sort of ID when on their calls. You will need to tell them what you expect the carers to do for 2 hours. Do you want them to prompt medications ? or prepare meals or just sit and chat? Do light housework? You need to be clear as I suspect your mum won't have a clue especially if she is agitated.
You should get a written care plan , in my case it was all done on line via an app which mother in law didn't see. You also need to be upfront as to your mum's condition and how she may react with carers . If she is sundowning , they will need to know the best way to occupy her and I provided a list of her interests and dislikes . My mother in law didn't sundown initially so her carers were more for meal preparation, so others will be along soon with their experience of sundowning.
Thank you for all that info most helpful regards Lesley
 

Lesley_A

New member
Jul 6, 2020
9
Met the agency today to discuss carer coming one hour a week to start.
 
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Lemondrizzle

Registered User
Aug 26, 2018
76
We used a local family run firm which in fact was the only company that serviced the area my MIL lived in. We had to take the chance but it was easier because we had CCTV in the house and Skype set up so we could see what was going on and also the carers could easily contact us with queries.
 
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Lynmax

Registered User
Nov 1, 2016
542
We used an agency for my mum and were very happy. But I understand that this is a national company with local franchises so their services might vary. We are not supposed to recommend agencies here as a pwd's needs vary so much, we did not think mum was very advanced although I think others involved thought otherwise! The carers met all mums needs ( 2 hours a day to provide a hot meal and company) until she had a nasty fall overnight and was admitted to hospital at the start of lockdown. She was then deemed not safe to go back home so was discharged to a care home ( one we chose from recommendations and after a negative covid test result) where she has now been assessed as not having capacity to make safe decisions so will remain there.

Obviously you know your mum best but I think what we needed to think of was what mum was doing for the 22 hours a day when the carers were not there.

We had several phone calls and meetings with the agency before engaging them, they them met mum at home and went back a second time to introduce the carers who would be working with mum . I helped write the care plan and they set up a private Whatsapp group for us to communicate with the carers and management. This worked very well.
 
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Sirena

Registered User
Feb 27, 2018
2,287
I talked to the manager of the care agency and explained what I thought my mother needed help with. The manager then assessed my mother to ensure they could meet her needs, she was a lovely person, nothing was too much trouble, and I had full confidence in her. She tried to ensure my mother had the same regular carers so she got to know and like them. They looked after my mother very well for 18 months until she moved to a care home.