What is a live-in carer and how could this help you?
At a certain point in our lives many of us decide that we could do with a little bit of help and support. Sometimes this starts with help around the house – a little bit of light house work and shopping, meal preparation and assistance with cooking.
As the burden of the years takes its toll on us physically, some of us are inclined to opt for more help – assistance with mobility and transferring from the bed to the chair, manoeuvring around the house, assistance with washing and dressing, assistance with toileting and continence issues, assistance with medication and support with organising GP and hospital appointments.
For some of us, life can really throw a curve ball at us. Medical issues we never expected hit us with the force of a hurricane – unforeseen issues such as strokes, heart attacks, kidney and liver disease, falls which result in badly broken bones which need plenty of time to recover and also memory related issues such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
For each of these things there is specialist NHS care – consultants and specialists who deal with these issues. However, have you considered what happens to you once you return home?
What is live-in care and what does it entail?
Live-in care is the term used to describe a carer who lives with the person needing care. They need to have their own bedroom, access to a clean and hygienic working shower or bath and space in the fridge and a cupboard for their own food.
The live-in carer will be self-employed and will negotiate his or her own salary with you based on the current going-rate for live-in care.
It is the live-in carer’s duty to discuss your health and medical issues with you and put in place a care plan which will deal with your needs and wants and put them into a fixed or flexible routine depending on your circumstance and preferences. Usually the routine begins with the time you like to get up and it will be based around the assistance you may need with toileting, showering and dressing. The carer will discuss whether or not you need your medication administered or whether you just need to be prompted to take your medication or left to do this yourself – if indeed you have medication.
The live-in carer will assist with all personal-care duties and if two people are required for hoisting or stand-aid use then a daily carer can be brought in to help. If you the care receiver need two carers to assist with transferring from the bed to the wheelchair or commode often during the day – two live-in carers may be needed.
The care receiver’s choice of breakfast, lunch, light beverages and the evening meal will be over-seen by the live-in carer who will also likely organise the shopping and see to light-house working tasks maintaining a clean and tidy live-in environment for the care receiver.
It is the live-in carers duty to make sure that you the care receiver is both happy with the care you receive and also feel the live-in carer is managing the running of the house and keeping the house clean and tidy. It is quite usual for the care receiver to also employ a cleaner especially if the carer is needed in a hands-on way to support the client all day or take the client out to social events or attend medical appointments.
The attitude of the live-in carer is crucial for the success of the arrangement and it is the duty of the live-in carer to be professional, sensible, compassionate, grateful and helpful to the person receiving care at all times.
Often great friendships between the carer and care receiver are established but they must always be professional.
The carer will be needing breaks during the day and if the care receiver is waking during the night it is usual, especially if it is more than once during the night, for the carer to charge for the hour or part hour.
If the care receiver is waking regularly during the night – either due to issues with pain management or toileting or if the care receiver is confused and feels disorientated – the GP must be informed so that he or she can over-see the situation.
It might happen that if night waking more than once a night is a regular occurrence then the care receiver may need to employ a waking night carer to stay up and attend to him or her all night as well as having a live-in carer during the day. This is for safety reasons. If a carer is waking often during the night they will not be physically capable of working all day the next day unless they can take specific breaks which allow them time to catch up on sleep.
The type of care that is right for you is individual to you
We are all different – we all have different needs and in fact we also all like different people. That is another angle to finding a carer. The personality has to fit. As the director of this small but fantastic agency what I often find when I speak with every single client is that the most crucial thing to the client is liking the care giver’s attitude and manner.
Professionalism is the quality I look for when choosing to introduce carers. I want to see that the carer is going to be hard working, grateful for the opportunity, respectful to the care receiver and to everyone he or she meets including myself.
Even if a care giver has the relevant qualifications, relevant experience and a clean DBS if I find the care giver lacks manners and is not appreciative of my time – I will not put this care giver forward.
Manners are a good indication of character
I am seeking to introduce carers of very good character who are reliable, grateful, helpful and appreciative of the work they are offered. People who are prepared to work hard and people who enjoy helping others.
I look for people with a minimum of 18 months experience but most of the carers who apply to my agency have years and years of valuable experience. They all hold the care certificate or an NVQ Level 2 or 3 in health and social care and show enormous dedication to their work.
Getting in touch
It is a pleasure to help people needing care and a pleasure to introduce these wonderful hard-working carers.
We are happy to speak with you on the phone – even if you are just at the ‘enquiry stage’.
Once we have established that you would like us to arrange care, we will visit and assess your needs and put out a specific targeted advert for you to find the right carer.
Private self-employed carers are immensely grateful for this service I provide and I find I always have a wealth of carers on my books.
The financial aspect
Our self-employed private carers will negotiate their rate with you – based on the going rate.
We then charge an agency rate of £15.00 per day of care which is reduced significantly over time. It means that you are covered if you need to have your carer replaced or hours extended and it also means you have support if any issues surrounding care arise.
What our carers say:
"I worked in a hospital for ten years and, although I loved my job, I hated not having the time needed to spend with my patients.
"As a private carer, I am able to spend quality time with my patients, making sure all my jobs are done and they have my undivided attention.
"When my day is over, I know I’ve given 100%."Danielle, Private Carer