Questions to Ask Home Care Providers

Questions to Ask Home Care Providers

Home Instead of Sequim, WA believes families should have the knowledge needed to choose the best home care company for them. Below are interview questions to ask each home care company that can help you compare one company with another.
(Home Instead's own answers are below each question in purple.)

1. Is the company licensed by the State of Washington?

Yes, we are a Home Services Agency licensed by the Washington State Department of Health.

2. Does the agency have 100% employer responsibility for the caregivers? Or does the client assume some, or all, of the employer responsibility/risk?

Home Instead Senior Care employs all Care Professionals as W-2 employees. We maintain 100% of the employer responsibility for our Care Pros including: payroll, tax withholding, annual training competencies, bonding and licensing, and workers compensation insurance. Our Clients, and their families, carry zero employer responsibility or risk when receiving care through Home Instead.

3. Have all the agency’s caregivers passed criminal background checks, drug screenings, and driving record checks?

Home Instead Senior Care® requires drug screening of all Caregivers. We also conduct thorough background and driving record checks on all prospective Care Pros. We will not send anyone into your home that we wouldn't invite into our own. It's that simple.

4. Have all the caregivers been trained?

  • By whom?
  • What is the extent of their training?
  • Does the training include Alzheimer's specific training?

Our team of Care Professionals includes Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), Home Care Aides (HCA) and experienced caregivers grandfathered into the state laws. They also complete a comprehensive, multi-phased training program before they ever meet or work with a client. Caregivers are also required to complete 12 hours of Continuing Education annually. We also offer Specialized Training for Alzheimer’s, Dementia, Bed-bound, and Hospice. If you or a family member are in need of one of these specialized services, we will send in a Care Pro who is qualified and also has experience in this field of service.

5. Are the caregivers bonded and insured?

Each person who enters your home is bonded to protect you against loss. And we insure all of our Caregivers to protect against loss, too. We believe in taking care of the people who take care of your family.

6. Does the agency cover the caregiver with workers’ compensation coverage?

Yes. Home Instead carries Workers Compensation Insurance to protect each of our Care Pros in case of a work-related injury.

7. Can you check references on the agency?

Yes. Home Instead has online reviews from previous and current Clients. Or check out our Google reviews and where you can compare our agency to other local Home Care agencies in the area.

8. Does the agency offer back-up / replacement caregivers if our regular caregiver is unable to come?

We understand that consistency is very important to you, your loved one, and to our Caregivers. This is how trust and relationships are built. Therefore, we will work with you to develop a primary Caregiver team.

For those instances when your primary Caregiver falls ill, takes a vacation, or simply cannot not make it in, we like to have already introduced a back-up Caregiver to your family if at all possible. This way, you and your family will already be familiar and comfortable with the back-up Caregiver. Yes, you will always be offered a replacement Caregiver. Consistency in care is very important to us.

9. How much flexibility will you have in setting a schedule for services?

Flexibility is crucial to personally customizing each Client’s care schedule. Home Instead can provide as little as a four-hour visit/three times per week, or as much as round-the-clock care seven days a week, depending on the needs of the Client. Clients can adjust the care schedule, as care needs change, by coordinating schedule changes with our Care Coordination team.

10. How does the agency provide quality oversight of the care provided?

We keep in contact with you or your loved one. Communication is a very important aspect of what we do. We will follow up regularly after care has started. We do this to ensure that proper care is being provided and that everyone is happy and comfortable with the situation. We also call to see how everything is going and to say hello.

Our team will also conduct routine home visits; we call these Quality Assurance Visits. Our Care Coordination team will call you or your loved one to schedule this. During the face-to-face visit, we will sit and discuss the care being provided, we will document if there has been any changes in condition since our last visit. We can alter the Care Plan, if necessary, at this time.

From their initial care consult and client onboarding, to their regular quality assurance visits, our team will strive to make your loved one safe, happy, and healthy in the comfort of their home!

11. Can I use my long term care insurance policy to pay for services?

Many Long Term Care policies will pay for non-medical home care. Once a client has opened a claim with their long term care insurance company, we are happy to communicate with the company that the client has purchased a policy with. We will take care of sending them the necessary documentation needed for reimbursement of services so you don't have to.

12. Does Medicare pay for home care with your agency?

Medicare does not pay for non-medical home care services. However, some Medicare Advantage Plans are starting to cover minimal services, like transportation, for their insure - ask your plan what is covered.

13. What about Medicaid or VA?

We do not have a license to service clients receiving Medicaid benefits at this time. We are a veteran friendly company and will accept clients that have been referred by the VA and approved for care vouchers as space permits.

14. What if I need help once normal business hours have already ended? Is staff available to take my phone call after-hours?

While we do not provide emergency medical services, we do have a staff member available to answer the phone for after-hours needs and concerns. This includes weekends and holidays!

15. What are the benefits of Home Care?

Home care services let people flourish in the everyday life they already know and love – in the place they want to be…home. With in-home care provided by the team at Home Instead of Clallam, Jefferson and Island Counties, care is personalized to your needs.

Home is familiar. Home is comfortable and provides a sense of security. As adults age, being in a place that is familiar to continue daily routines is very beneficial, especially for progressive memory conditions like Dementia.

Another benefit of home care is the dedicated Care Professional providing one-on-one care in a well-known environment. Care Pros promote independence and companionship while helping to reduce the risk of falls. Family benefits from having peace of mind knowing their loved one is being cared for.

16. How will Home Instead Care Professionals help my family members?

Providing care to an aging adult is just as important as supporting the family. Home Instead understands that caring for an aging adult is a team approach. It requires communication with both the senior and their family.

Home Instead provides emotional support as well as respite support for family members. Our team provides family with peace of mind knowing that a loved one is being taken care of.

17. Why should I choose Home Instead for In-Home Care?

Our team will provide personalized care, support and education to help enhance the lives of aging adults and their families. We strive to partner with each client and their family members to help meet the needs of the individual.

What sets us apart is our foundational principles including the principle of relationships before task and determination to provide superior quality service. Coupled with our culture, commitment to our clients and team members, Home Instead of Clallam, Jefferson and Island Counties is committed to keeping seniors and people with chronic conditions safe and comfortable in a familiar environment where they can live with dignity as they age.