Questions to Ask Home Care Providers
Home Instead of Oconee & Pickens Counties believes families should have the necessary knowledge to choose the best home care company for them. We understand that starting the process of looking for home care can be daunting, so we've created a number of questions to help you compare home care companies!
(Home Instead's own answers are below each question in purple.)
1. Is the Caregiver a direct agency employee or an Independent contractor with a registry?
All Home Instead Caregivers are direct employees, W2 Employees.
2. Do I write one check to the Agency? Or, do I have to write multiple checks – 1 to the Caregiver and 1 to the company?
(If you write a check to a caregiver you may become the caregiver’s employer, and you would assume certain responsibilities, risks, and liabilities. i.e.- employer federal and state taxes, Social Security, Medicare and Unemployment)
One Check is all you have to write to Home Instead Senior Care (HISC), and we handle paying the caregiver. HISC handles all taxes, Social Security, Medicare and Unemployment for all of its employees.
3. Is the Caregiver bonded and Insured?
(This means that the agency, or registry has insurance to cover any claims for which the caregiver is responsible so the homeowner is not liable should something happen)
All HISC Caregivers are Bonded and Insured, removing all risk to homeowners!
4. Is the Caregiver covered under a workers’ compensation insurance policy?
(If not, you would be liable for the injury)
Yes, we cover any fall, trip, injury, wreck, or accident!
5. Has the Caregiver been trained?
- Does the Caregiver receive ongoing training?
- By whom?
Yes, all caregivers go through training during our orientation process. We also offer ongoing training to all of our caregivers and it includes: Alzheimer’s and dementia training, COPD, CHF, Diabetes, Personal Care and many more courses. Trainings are taught by our office staff and Certified Nursing Assistants.
6. Does the agency or registry train all of its caregivers?
Yes, all caregivers are trained at orientation and have ongoing training.
7. Does the training include special Alzheimer or dementia training?
We offer a comprehensive 2 day course on Alzheimer’s and Dementia training. Currently over 50% of our caregivers have completed this training, with more caregivers taking it monthly.
8. Has the Caregiver undergone criminal background and drug screening checks, and have personal and professional references been secured?
Yes, Our caregivers go through a National Criminal Background, as well as State and County criminal checks, pre-employment drug screening as well as ongoing random drug testing. We also have required personal and Professional references.
9. Does the Agency, or registry offer same day back-up/replacement caregivers?
Yes, we offer same day replacement caregivers if you primary caregiver has to miss a day or becomes sick and needs a day off.
10. How much flexibility will you have in setting a schedule for services?
(Who is responsible for scheduling caregiver/back-up caregivers?)
You control your schedule! HISC will schedule the caregiver and or back-ups as needed.
11. What restriction (if any) apply to the services provided?
- Hours of service
- Lifting restrictions?
- Who pays the caregiver and pays/reports applicable taxes?
You can choose your hours of service up to 24 hours a day.
We do have 25lb lifting restriction to keep the caregiver and your loved one safe.
HISC pays the caregiver and all taxes.
12. How much notice does the agency, or registry need to begin or cancel services?
24-48 hours to start services, and you can cancel services at any time.
13. What is the agency’s or registry’s communication plan to keep families informed?
We have a website for family members to log into so they can see: The schedule (days and times), the caregiver that is coming and his/her picture, all tasks to be performed by the caregiver, and any notes that the caregiver leaves. The website also allows you to see the invoices and payments.
14. Does the agency or registry maintain a quality assurance or supervisory program?
(If so, how frequent are the checks?)
Yes, we have a QA program where we do 1st shift introductions for all caregivers, and we do bi-monthly checks (either by phone or in person).