The Risk of Hiring Uncertified, Unlicensed Private Caregivers
May 4, 2019
Janelle Thomas MSN, RN
I am going to write from my heart today on an issue that is very near and dear to me and that is the security of our senior population. As we all know the economy has taken a severe hit in the last couple of years and this has taken a real toll on all of us. One of the side effects is individuals who have lost jobs and are looking for a way to replace lost income. Seniors have become easy prey.
Care Options for Kids has been involved in home care since 1997. We have seen more and more individuals opting out of using a reputable company for hiring a home care worker in order to save money. They instead go directly to the worker and hire them privately.
Why Is It Dangerous to Hire Private Caregivers?
This is a very dangerous thing to do for several reasons. One of the most important is the background of the individual.
We have frequently gone through the registration of an individual who appears as angelic as the angel Gabriel – only to run their criminal background check to find they have a history of criminal activity. We have begun the process on many individuals who we know were hired privately prior to registering with Care Options for Kids, and who were not able to meet state-mandated standards; so were unable to register with Care Options for Kids.
For the most part, privately hired caregivers are uncertified, unlicensed, and untrained individuals.
The Caregiver Registration Process at Care Options for Kids
Let me share with you the required process caregivers who register with Care Options for Kids must go through.
All caregivers who walk through Care Options for Kids doors take a skills test. The test determines their understanding of home care, knowledge of their skill level, and grasp of the English language. They must pass this test with a 70% or higher in order to proceed with registration.
They then meet one-on-one with a trained staff member who discusses their home care experience, gets to know their personality, and whether or not they will be a good fit for Care Options for Kids and vice versa.
If all are in agreement, the caregiver then begins the actual registration process. Here are the items Care Options for Kids requires for caregivers to register:
Clean Criminal Background Screening for Level 2 (national)
Social Security card
Auto insurance card
Medical statement saying the caregiver is “free of communicable diseases”
Professional Liability Insurance Policy
HIV/Aids certificate of education
Verification of license (for CNAs and Nurses)
In addition to this registration process, the caregiver attends an orientation class at Care Options for Kids to review client-focused issues. By the end of the orientation, Care Options for Kids knows whether or not we want to represent this caregiver. Only after the orientation is completed and the registration file is final is the caregiver referred to a client from Care Options for Kids. At this point, it depends on the client’s feedback on whether or not caregivers continue to receive referrals from Care Options for Kids.
You only have to pick up the latest newspaper or listen to the stories on the 5 O’clock News to hear the horror stories of unlicensed, non-screened caregivers to know bad things can happen. Please, make sure you are putting enough precautions in place to give your loved one and you the peace of mind you deserve. Let me urge you to use licensed private care companies who have sterling reputations in your area to meet your home care needs and keep you safe, secure, and well cared for in the comfort of your own home.
Contact Care Options for Kids for Home Health Care Services in Florida