HOME CARE: What you should expect

Five things to expect from a good home care service
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has recently published a guide for older people who arrange their own home care. The guide includes things you should expect from a good home care service.

You should expect to:

1. Have care workers who are able to meet your needs
Care workers should have the right skills needed to support you, for example if you have dementia or are deaf or blind. They should also respect your cultural and religious values and make sure that your needs are met.

2. Feel comfortable with your care workers
You should expect to see the same care workers regularly, so they can get to know you and be familiar with your needs including how you like to communicate and your likes and dislikes.

3. Be made aware of changes in advance
If for any reason, your regular care worker is unable to visit you, you should be told in advance that a different care worker is coming.

4. Be given a care diary that’s regularly updated
Home care workers and others who help you at home such as physiotherapists or community nurses should update your care diary each time they visit.

5. Be given a home care plan that meets your needs
You could be given a plan that describes the care the agency will be providing that is focused on what is important to you and includes any specific health problems or disabilities you may have.

To make sure that the plan is meeting your needs you should have a review within the first six weeks of your first care visit. After that, the plan should be reviewed at least once a year.

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