You walk up to the front door, ring the bell, and eagerly wait to see your first client. It’s a brand new assignment, and you are ready. Trained, prepared, confident.
That’s the way every home health care professional should feel when they walk into a new client’s home.
Working for a home health care agency that provides comprehensive training, ongoing supervision, one-on-one coaching, and round-the-clock accessibility and support to its home health care professionals can mean the difference between a successful, rewarding career and a negative, stressful experience.
When you enter a client’s home, you enter their lives, using your skills to make a powerful difference. Home health care should challenge and inspire you. In order to make the most out of this unique career path, you should be prepared to evaluate the home care agency you will be working with.
Not all agencies are created equal; it’s important to ask a potential home health care employer the right questions to determine whether or not you will get the training and support you deserve.
Evaluating your home health care employer
Here are some important things to consider when evaluating a home care agency. These questions will help you determine whether or not an agency is going to help you become “job ready”:
Does your agency offer comprehensive training?
A home health care employer should provide a comprehensive training program at no cost to its new employees. Some agencies, like BAYADA Home Health Care, offer hands-on, simulated training as part of their program, giving new employees an opportunity to learn and practice in a realistic, safe environment. It’s a great way to gain confidence in your new skills. Ongoing training (annually or more often) is important for keeping your skills current.
Will you provide one-on-one orientation to the client’s care or service plan?
Every client and home situation is unique, so learning all you can about your specific client is critical to being properly prepared. Having a one-on-one orientation with a clinical case manager or other supervisor will allow you the opportunity to review the case and ask all the questions you need.
Will I be able to meet the client prior to my first day in their home?
Some home care professionals don’t meet their clients until the first day of their assignment, while others prefer to have a “meet and greet” beforehand. It’s an individual preference, but your home care agency should give you the option of doing so.
Will there be in-home mentoring and supervision by a nurse clinical manager?
Preparing for your first visit with a new client should include in-home mentoring to become acclimated. Frequent home visits by a supervisor should be a standard component of the support you receive from the agency.
Can I expect 24/7 clinical support?
You should never feel alone to handle a situation. A quality home health care agency should provide clinical support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you know help is just a phone call away, you can handle any situation with confidence.
Some other questions to help you determine if your home care employer is right for you:
- Will you have a choice of clients (adults or pediatrics)?
- Is there a friendly office team to coordinate scheduling?
- Are the schedules flexible (full-time, part-time, and per diem)?
- Do they offer paid time off or benefits?
- When will you be paid (weekly)?
- Will you be able to work close to home?
Most home health care professionals enjoy the meaningful, one-on-one care they provide and the close relationships they forge with their clients. The confidence to make a difference in your client’s life should begin before you even walk through the door.
If you are interested in a rewarding home health care career, contact us today!