Matching Home Health Caregivers to Clients

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With increasing sophistication, home care companies are able to precisely match paid caregivers to clients. It makes a difference in the quality of care when caregivers can be ideally matched to clients. The caregiver sent into someone’s home to deliver care services must be selected as thoughtfully as possible to make the experience positive for both parties.

But why does this matching matter? Isn’t making a meal or doing some errands or assisting with personal grooming just something that needs to get done, regardless of personality?

Well, yes, but compatibility is an important part of providing quality care.

Yet for people who receive ongoing care in their own homes, it can make a tremendous difference to them to make a meaningful connection with their caregiver.

One example is that of a retired Navy nurse who lives with her adult daughter and adult grandson in California. At 100 years old, Mary still enjoys getting her hair done weekly and playing cards, but since her family members are at work all day she is on her own a lot of the time. The solution is a caregiver who can take her to run errands or provide companionship care by talking and playing games once or twice a week.

Mary had one caregiver who she liked well enough, but then Amber took over care for Mary because of their common backgrounds: Amber’s husband is also in the Navy. Not only do these two women—separated by more than six decades in age—enjoy a regular card game together, Mary can reminisce about being in the Navy, being married to a husband in the Navy, being a mother who moved her family a lot and much more knowing that Amber really understands.

It’s a match!

Of course it’s not always possible to find people with similar experiences or interests, but it can make a difference to select a caregiver who is open to receiving as well as giving in the care relationship. A perfect example of this is a woman in her 90s who has Alzheimer’s disease and still enjoys knitting and crocheting.

A caregiver was placed with her to provide both personal and companionship care despite not having knitting skills or hobbies herself. What the caregiver did have was compassion and a willingness to learn something new. Today the client and caregiver have such a successful relationship and good time knitting together that they donate their handmade blankets them to a local hospital.

There are as many ways to match caregivers to clients as there are people who need care services. Some caregivers might be close in age to the person they assist while others might have a shared affinity for a hobby or activity that the two can engage in together. Caregivers may find a bond with a client over similar ethnic heritages, previous careers, or cultural interests.

Caregiving is not just about tending to the physical needs of someone who, due to age or illness, requires some level of assistance in their home. Rather caregiving is an opportunity to keep growing and learning and living life to the fullest as each person makes new friends, acquires new skills, and makes a difference in one another’s lives.

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