Having access to reliable home care services in Overlea, Maryland ensures the health, safety, and quality of life of an individual, most especially seniors. We at Home Care Plus believe that everybody deserves client-centered care. We strive to provide our valued clients the best-fitting set of services to meet their unique needs, making sure they receive the right level of care and assistance at all times. We guarantee our team is composed of trustworthy, certified, and compassionate caregivers ready to render dignified care.
Our services offered:
- Personal Care Services
- Respite Care Services
- Companionship Services
- Dementia Care
- Veterans Care
- Live-In Care
- Personal Hygiene
- Mobility Assistance
- Transportation Services
The essential questions you must ask to make sure a company possesses a strong set of core values:
- Communication – Will there be comfortable, easy communication with the personal care attendant? Will I have continuous access to my case manager? We make sure that you will receive these and more. This is our core approach to meet your preferences. We believe that you must always have the right control or communication with the PCA. To see to it that this is the case, we assign a readily available case manager.
- Integrity – Have they gained a sense of trust since they have established? Do they handle their clients with care? At Home Care Plus, we believe that the key to a comfortable, trusting relationship is integrity, taking the client’s needs and well-being into high consideration. This is also the reason why we carefully choose our personal care attendants.
- Performance – Am I guaranteed to receive the promised professional care? Will they be accountable? Will they do follow-ups to ensure the client is receiving the right care? To us, home care is ever-changing. Thus, a family’s needs do not remain constant. You opted for home care to make sure your loved one remains independent and retains their quality of life and not to endure additional paperwork and handle problem-solving matters. You can guarantee that we will be ready to assist you with anything, anytime. If you’re not satisfied, we will work with you until you are.
We are committed to:
- Hiring, training, and maintaining competent, compassionate staff
- Recognizing, supporting, and appreciating our staff as our greatest asset
- Establishing a work environment that cultivates personal enjoyment and improves job satisfaction and performance through recognition, acknowledgment, and reward
- Nurturing and maintaining positive relationships with the community, including local home care and health care personnel/organizations
- Managing and conducting our business in an accountable and responsible manner
- Establishing and adhering to the professional code of ethics of the home care industry and continuous quality improvement measures throughout the agency
Does your loved one require assistance to help them stay independent and well at home? Use this checklist to determine if they need some aid.
1. Care Needs
Observe and consider assessing their care needs and make a list of options that might help meet these needs. Make sure to jot down the events of their usual day such as getting in and out of bed, preparing meals, taking baths, and other daily activities.
2. Hands-on Care
Do they need hands-on care? What level of care would be suitable for them? Do they need hands-on personal care or non-hands on companion care? If it is the latter, make a list of the things the care recipient is keen on doing.
3. Memory Loss
Is your loved one suffering memory loss? If so, have they had the type of memory loss diagnosed (Alzheimer’s Disease, Pick’s Disease, Huntington’s Disease, Lewy Body Disease, Frontal Lobe Dementia, Frontotemporal Dementia, Vascular Dementia, Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus, Parkinson’s Disease)? Blood clots and brain tumors may also cause dementia. An assessment and diagnosis of the dementia type will help the agency better understand your loved one’s care needs and choose and assign the most suitable caregiver with the right skillsets and qualifications.
4. Transportation Services
Do they need professional transportation services to their Doctor visits or other medical appointments? How about social gatherings, will they also need our assistance? If so, how will they travel? Will they be traveling alone? Has the home care agency verified the caregiver’s vehicle insurance is active? Will they be taking public transportation (buses or taxis)? Some cities provide transportation for seniors – you may want to call your local Department on Aging for information.
Do you need a caregiver who speaks a particular language?
How many hours a day will you require their care? Thoroughly review the list of services you need to be performed during the care visit, and decide on the minimum number of hours per day which would serve as a starting point. The agency will need to know the hours of service to appoint a caregiver and allow you to adjust the hours after the first week to accurately meet your loved one’s care needs.
7. Medication Management
What is the care recipient’s method for managing medications? Are they having trouble with adhering to their medication regimen? Make sure to provide a list of medications and the method of monitoring so the agency will be aware of possible side effects and other requirements such as taking pills with or without food, etc.
Are there any special cooking requirements or specific diet plans to follow? Communicate any food allergies and consider how groceries will be purchased or delivered if the care recipient is unable to shop for groceries on their own.
9. Additional Skills
Is there a need for skilled care services such as blood sugar testing, taking blood pressure, wound care, or a feeding tube? Communicate with the agency if these specialized services will need to be performed or monitored.
10. Care Management
Will care management be required? As caregivers, we are responsible for providing hands-on care to our valued clients. We understand that the primary caregiver won’t have time to manage the overall care issues. A trained care manager can supervise all of the care needs from obtaining refills to medications via the local pharmacy. They will also arrange doctor’s appointments and other necessary services for the client’s convenience. Furthermore, the care manager will work with the client’s family members and take on responsibilities that they are unable to perform, and provide professional expertise in guiding the long-term care decisions.
A Checklist to Help You Choose a Quality, Safe Home Care Agency
- Caregivers are “employees” (this means the agency is responsible for paying all employee payroll taxes, as required by law: Unemployment Insurance tax, Medicare tax, Social Security tax, and State and Federal with-holdings)
- Business license and necessary state licensure (if required by the state where the agency is located)
- Professional Liability Insurance
- Fidelity Bond Insurance (this is sometimes referred to as “theft” insurance)
- Active Management of the Caregiver through a direct Supervisor or Manager
- Worker’s Compensation Insurance
- Training for Caregivers
- 24-Hour On-Call Service
- Plan of Care
- Criminal Background Check performed on all Employees
- Satisfactory Customer Ratings
- Family members can log in to a website portal to monitor the care provided to their family member
- Caregivers check-in and out via a phone app that validates the caregiver is at the client’s home
Home care agency staff members must have the following certifications and expertise:
ACSAH Certified Senior Care Aide (CSCA) – The dynamic, interactive ACSAH-Certified Senior Care Aide Program conducts hours of high-quality training in essential caregiving, communication, and professional skills.
With a thoroughly researched, well-organized curriculum, knowledge quizzes, videos, and other support materials, the CSCA Training Program is a complete ready-to-go package that makes it easy to train critically-needed personal and home care workers in all the skills they need to acquire.
The program is written at a 5th-grade literacy level. This is designed according to the principles of adult learning theories, the program utilizes a variety of learning modalities to maximize students’ understanding and retention of material. The curriculum includes modules on:
- Communication skills
- Caring for the elderly and disabled
- Roles and responsibilities of a personal care attendant
- How to recognize and prevent pressure ulcers
- Moving and positioning someone in bed and in/out of a wheelchair
- Active range of motion exercises
- Personal care (grooming, hygiene, etc.)
- Tub baths and showers
- Proper body mechanics for the caregiver and care recipient
- Infection control and bloodborne pathogens
- Assisting with medications
- Vital signs
- Safe wheelchair use
- Reducing personal stress
- Fire safety and fall prevention
- Elder abuse and neglect
- Specific diseases, including: early to mid and mid to late-stage Alzheimer’s disease, arthritis, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke and aphasia, depression, Parkinson’s, ALS, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury
- Cultural competency
ACSAH Certified Senior Care Manager (CSCM) – The ACSAH Certified Senior Care Manager (CSCM) Training and Certification Program offers all of the above noted CSCA training in addition to the following categories directed specifically at managing and operating a non-medical home care agency:
- Staffing and Caregiver Placement at Client Home
- Hiring Caregivers
- Home Care Policies and Procedures/Legal Documentation
- Human Resources
- Client Intake and Assessments
- Client Service and Maintenance – Focus on Quality Care Outcomes
- Insurance Policies
- Veterans Aid Benefit Consultant
- Medicaid Billing
- Billing/Accounts Receivable
- Marketing and Business Development
- Payroll and Quickbooks
- Technology Support and Website Editing
ACSAH Certified Senior Health Coach (CSHC) – provides the best training and certification for people who educate seniors about healthy lifestyles, diet, and overall well-being. Health and wellness coaches work with elderly individuals and groups in a client-centered process to facilitate the client to develop and attain self-determined goals related to health and wellness. Coaches support clients in mobilizing internal strengths and external resources, and in developing self-management strategies for making sustainable, healthy lifestyle, behavior changes.
While health and wellness coaches do not diagnose conditions, prescribe treatments, or provide psychological therapeutic interventions, they may provide expert guidance in areas in which they hold active, nationally recognized credentials, and may offer resources from nationally recognized authorities.
As partners and facilitators, health and wellness coaches support their clients in achieving health goals and behavioral changes based on their clients’ own goals. Coaches will also be consistent with treatment plans as prescribed by individual clients’ professional healthcare providers. They also assist clients to use their insight, personal strengths and resources, goal setting, action steps, and accountability toward healthy lifestyle change. Candidates for certification will be tested on the following core modules:
- Coaching Relationship/ Communication/ Techniques
- Coaching structure
- Coaching process
- Trust & rapport
- Active listening and presence
- Client-centered relationship
- Client emotions and energy
- Client’s freedom of choice
- Assist client to evaluate and integrate health information
- Goals and implementing action
- Increase positive psychological resources
- Health & Wellness
These home care agency checklist requirements are especially valuable when no family members live close enough to monitor the care of their loved ones. By having this list of standards in place, if the caregiver suffers an accident while working in the senior’s home, their injuries and care are covered by the Worker’s Compensation Insurance. Active supervision of caregivers allows the agency to professionally work through any performance issues. A 24-hour on-call service allows for last-minute schedule changes and backup caregivers to be scheduled when necessary. Training programs provide Caregivers with guidelines to follow for performing quality care duties.
In addition, the caregiver is protected by the Unemployment Insurance if they are not staffed between assignments and meet the necessary qualifications. Caregivers also have the guarantee of receiving Medicare and Social Security benefits when they retire because they have paid into these programs as an employee of the agency.
Senior Driver Safety
What to Do If You Think a Senior Should Not be Driving
The Federal Highway Administration (FHA) reports that drivers age 70 and above experience more motor vehicle fatalities than any other driving group, with the exception of drivers under age 20. Aging affects each of us differently, and when chronic illnesses are also present, there can be a decline in physical and cognitive abilities.
While many seniors learn to compensate successfully for any cognitive or functional limitations, sometimes it does become necessary to let someone else do the driving. Remember that medications can sometimes harm driving ability at any age. A vision change will also present challenges for the driver’s safety.
First, take an assessment of the senior’s driving capability and begin thinking of alternate transportation resources to introduce to them at the same time you have the discussion to transfer the keys. You may want to begin with limiting night-time driving as a first step, as this will give the senior a chance to learn how to plan when needing someone else to assist with transportation. Once they are accustomed to not driving at night and realize they still have access to alternate transportation, you can adapt to this more easily in daytime driving too.
Safe Driving Checklist for Seniors
- Does the senior allow others to ride in the car with them when they are driving?
- Vision: Did the senior pass the vision test? (Cataracts, Glaucoma, and Macular Degeneration can all impact vision quality).
- Does the senior seem nervous or extra anxious when driving?
- Does the senior take alternate routes to avoid major highways?
- Does the senior fail to stop at red lights or stop signs?
- Are speed limits obeyed (Not driving too slow or too fast)?
- Have neighbors or others who see the senior driving (anyone who also attends a regular event they may drive to) observed anything unsafe?
- Are there any unexplained dents in the paint of the car or in the garage?
If you deem it unsafe for the senior to continue to drive, and you feel they will not be accepting of this, it may be best to first discuss this with their physician. The doctor can do a test of their vision, hearing, and reflexes and begin the conversation about how declined functionalities may negatively impact their ability to drive safely.
Although this is a tough decision to make, no one wants to be responsible for an accident that may have been preventable. The high rate of driving fatalities involving seniors includes incidents of pedestrians who are hit by senior drivers.
The tragic 2003 Santa Monica farmer’s market accident left 10 people dead and 63 injured after George Weller, age 86 at the time, accidentally accelerated on the gas pedal, instead of the brake pedal. He, unfortunately, had previous accidents and there were reports that neighbors and others had witnessed his unsafe driving.
As you discuss the need for a change in driving with the senior, if you feel they are resistant, share with them your concern for other’s safety, as well as their own safety. You may be able to ask their physician to write a letter stating it is unsafe for them to drive if they are taking certain medications or suffering from memory loss.
You may contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles to request the license be revoked. Each state has different requirements for senior drivers – it may be possible that the senior will not be able to pass their license renewal test anyway. Check the criteria for your state to find out how they might be able to help you terminate the driver’s license.
Get in Touch with Us!
Home Care Plus assures our valued clients that they are under the care of compassionate and highly trained professionals. Feel free to send us a message should you have further questions!