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HOW TO CHOOSE
GOOD CARE GUIDE

Care provision continues to be a growing issue in this country with life expectancy increasing due to advances in medicine and new medical treatments, and changing lifestyles.

There are also now more people paying for care privately, or purchasing care through a direct payment, a personal budget or a self-directed support initiative.

Choosing the Right Care

Choosing the right care will affect everyone involved so it’s important to ensure the person with care needs, the main carer and the family all receive the best quality support.

Paul Parlby, chief executive of Crossroads Together, said: “While many care providers deliver a good level of support to people with care needs, not everybody considers the needs of the carer or other family members. Our aim is to ensure that carers maintain their own health and wellbeing, and are not put into financial straits, that they get a break from their caring role and that they know expert advice and support is available to them too.”

Crossroads Together understands that most people want good quality care and support delivered at home so that, for as long as possible, the person they care for can stay in the comfort of their own home with the family and friends who support them. It’s therefore essential to choose a care provider who will give the best all-round service to meet the needs of those involved – and that means asking a number of vital questions first.

Whether the carer lives with the person with care needs or not, if they’re providing care for someone at home who has a disability, chronic illness, mental ill health or life-limiting condition, they’ll understand the importance of getting the right kind of support for everyone.

The Questions

  1. How do you want you and the person you care for to be supported?

There are two main options available for hiring a support worker. You can employ a support worker or personal assistant directly, or you can pay an agency to provide one for you.

  1. What are your first impressions?

The initial conversations you have with a support worker will be a good indication of your future relationships and how easy it will be to talk to them.

  1. How will your support package be developed?

Your support provider should be willing to spend time getting to know you, to find out about your needs and wishes and what is important to you, your family and the person you care for.

  1. How will your support be monitored and changed?

Your support provider should carry out a review of your support, family support and the support provided to the person you care for on an annual basis.

  1. How much will it cost?

Your support worker should confirm a price that will not change, unless by mutual agreement, after you have both signed the contract.

  1. Check the staff who will be supporting you

Your provider should arrange quality staff who will support you based on your individual needs, and who are able to direct you to additional services.

  1. How will they make sure you are safe and supported properly?

A support provider agency should provide a service which meets certain standards.

  1. Check your right to complain

If you are buying support and things go wrong you want to be certain that any problems can be solved quickly and efficiently.

  1. How can you end the agreement?

Circumstances change and there might come a time when you need to cancel your support agreement. You need to know that you can do this with ease.

  1.   Check the geography

It is good to check where your support team is coming from. If it is too far from where you live, can they get to you on time?

  1.   Learn the terminology

There is a lot of jargon in social care and you should familiarise yourself with a few key terms.