|Not all respite care agencies are created equal. Although this truism should hardly come as a surprise to you, the fact that there are actually some very distinct variations in the kind of care that...|
Not all respite care agencies are created equal. Although this truism should hardly come as a surprise to you, the fact that there are actually some very distinct variations in the kind of care that is provided and also the quality of care should give you pause and cause you to ask a lot of very detailed questions about the care you are about to invite into your home. Here is a list of questions to ask a respite care agency before you sign on the dotted line.
* Does the agency require your loved one to be eligible for Medicaid? This is by no means a universal requirement and actually only a few agencies make it a prerequisite to care, but it is wise to know this ahead of time. Should it turn out that your loved one is not eligible, the agency may terminate care even if another payer is in place, and as such a relationship you and your family may have built with the agency is going to fall by the wayside.
* Discuss funding in detail. Respite care agencies will handle billing, costs, and associated tasks differently if the care is provided for a young child, a minor, or a senior citizen.
* Find out if there is a waiting list for services. Even if you are approved for funding and even if a certain amount of hours are allocated to you, the odds are good that the more sought after agencies have a waiting list for respite care workers. While a short list is most likely going to be the norm, a long list may be counterproductive for your respite care needs and perhaps you will be better served finding another agency.
* Learn about the scope of services offered by the respite care agency. Some offer respite care as only one component of patient care, and also count certified nursing help, home health nursing, and even home health occupational therapy among the services they offer. Contracting with this kind of agency for your respite care may enable you to test your loved one’s eligibility for the other services as well, and when combined with respite care, you may actually find that your loved one’s quality of life will greatly increase.
* Find out all the background check information that the agency routinely obtains from respite care workers. In some cases the checks are fairly extensive and include criminal and also financial backgrounds while in other cases it is simply a matter of running an educational and employment background check.
* Do not assume that what applied to your friend’s situation across the country a year ago will also apply to you. Rules change frequently and often, and there are distinct differences in local funding options available, making respite care not at all comparable in the United States. In the United Kingdom the rules are set up differently and since the country is by far smaller than the US, you will find that there the respite care programs are indeed quite comparable.