San Francisco Elder Care

How to Choose a San Francisco Elder Care Provider

If you’ve spent any time looking for an elder care provider in San Francisco, you’ve undoubtedly noticed the rapid proliferation of new companies. As the population of the city ages, more and more people are looking for a qualified care provider to help them around the come. To satisfy the demand, many new providers are inundating the market. With so many choices to choose from the question of how to choose an elder care provider becomes increasingly important.

Checklist for Choosing an Elder Care Provider

Make sure to consider all of the following before making your choice.

  1. Needs – The best way to determine your needs is to envision a typical day. What activities are performed on a daily basis and how could a skilled care worker make these easier?
  2. Companion Care verses Hands-on Care – Once you have a list of all the possible activities you might need help with, you can determine whether your needs are primarily for companion care or whether you need more comprehensive hands-on care to live comfortably.
  3. Your Transportation Needs – Do you want a caregiver to escort you to appointments and social engagements? If so, it is important to make sure that the senior care provider you select has all the necessary insurance up to date. It is also very important to be clear about your transportation needs up front to ensure that your provider can meet your needs.
  4. Memory Issues – It is a good idea to get a full mental competency evaluation from a qualified medical professional before starting out with a new home care provider. That way if there are memory issues your helper will be qualified to deal with them. Working with Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia requires special training. In order to know that your loved one is getting the care the need it is crucial you let the home care provider know what they need help with.
  5. First Language – If English is not your loved one’s first language, ask your elder care provider candidates if they can provide a worker who speaks their first language. Especially in a multi-cultural city like San Francisco, it is often now possible to get qualified workers fluent in most languages.
  6. Time – Elder care
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    can be anywhere from a couple of hours of help a day to round the clock daily service. What are your loved one’s current needs? Consider that those needs could change. It’s best to choose an provider that can adapt to the changing needs of you loved one.

  7. Culinary/Dietary – Consider whether you want a helper that can also cook. If so, are there any special dietary needs, like food allergies or a low sodium diet. Also, home care workers can help out by doing food shopping if your loved one still wants to do their own cooking.
  8. Special Skills – Consider whether your loved one’s care needs require any special skills. Do they need someone to take their blood pressure, monitor their blood sugar or any other specialized tasks?
  9. Managing Medication – Taking the proper dosage of medications at the right time is absolutely crucial to maintaining good health. Talk to your home care worker about the medication schedule and when the medications need to be refilled. Often, this will need to managed by an RN. More about this in the next section care management.
  10. Care Management – First, it’s important to figure out if care management will be required. Care management refers to some of the larger health related routines that must be organized. A care manager often works as a liaison between your loved one and their primary care physician in between doctor visits. To determine if you need a care manger, first make an exhaustive list of all you loved one’s health care requirements. Bring this list to your potential elder care service providers to see if they are able to provide the service you need.