As we grow older we face certain challenges which can make it harder to live independently – but help is out there.
Tanya George, the owner of Caremark Uttlesford & Chelmsford, which has provided professional home care services in the local area for ten years, explains how home care works, the benefits of it and the services the Dunmow-based company offers.
Q: What is home care?
A: Perhaps the single most important thing that we do is to provide you with a little help and support that allows you to continue to live independently in the home you love. Our priority is to provide you with a service that delights you, meets your needs, respects your wishes, promotes your independence and respects your dignity.
Q: What are the benefits of home care?
A: Our homes are part of us and we are part of our homes. For many of us, especially as we get older, a sense of place is important; our homes give us that. Our memories are important; our homes are memory storerooms.
Studies show that living in a familiar environment and maintaining routine reduces stress and enhances wellbeing, particularly for people with dementia. Home care supports people to live independently in their own space.
Q: Who can you care for?
A: We provide a full range of domiciliary care services for adults. We work with you to design your personal home care plan. This can range from a 30-minute care and support visit, through to full live-in support.
Our services include: companionship, personal care, sitting services, live-in care, domestic help, meal preparation and shopping. If there is something that is not listed that does not mean that we cannot provide that service.
Q: Can I choose my care provider?
A: We are very happy to provide care to people funded through Social Services. If you are receiving home care through social services and you want to be able to choose your provider, this can be done through a direct payment, which will allow you to purchase your support from a provider of your choice. We are more than happy to advise you on this.
Q: Will my care be tailored to me?
A: Yes, this is your service, it is about you, and how you would like things to be done.
We will conduct an assessment with you prior to commencing your care, you tell us what is important to you, your likes and dislikes.
Your support plan is tailored to your requirements, and if things change then so can your care plan. A care and support service should always be personal to you, and have the ability to change and adapt with you.
Q: How safe is it for carers to visit people in their homes?
A: All carers are tested for Covid-19 weekly and, as frontline workers, are currently undergoing a vaccination programme, which will be completed very shortly. They also wear PPE when visiting.
Q: Have you got any advice for families who may be considering home care?
A: It would be wise to give any care companies you are considering a call – speak to the manager, get a feel for how they operate and acquire more information.
Make sure you ask the important questions: is the company and its carers local? Will carers stick to regular call times? How long has the company been running? How many carers will be visiting my relative?
In these times, it’s also necessary to learn how they are dealing with the pandemic.