I grew up with my maternal grandparends living with us in a shared yard. My mom and her sister used to take care of them but it took a tall on them both. Many individuals take care of their loved ones. Maybe you are caring for a relative or a friend. It is not unusual to reach a point that you begin feeling overwhelmed. Hiring help can help the seniors you are caring for receive the quality of care they deserve while providing you with relief. Home care varies in the level of service provided. The first thing you should do when determining care in the home is deciding what is needed. Do you need 24/7 care or someone to help out with certain activities a few times a day? Do you need someone to help meet the social needs of your loved one or someone to help address the emotional and physical needs of your loved one? There are several types of caregivers available when hiring a professional to work with your loved one. Typically, each type of care can be placed in one of two categories: Medical and Non-medical.


Medical caregivers include skilled nursing care, hospice, and home health care. Home health is a type of care that is provided after an illness or injury occurs. Doctors typically prescribe home health to come to the home and it is usually covered by insurance. They come in to check vital signs and to help monitor medications and pain. Hospice is in-home care for terminal patients. 

Typically patients receiving hospice care have no more than six months to live. Hospice is received in the home where the patient is living at the time. 

A team of professionals is involved on a hospice team and includes everything from counseling to pain and medication management. Skilled nursing care is the highest level of care and is designed for elderly patients who are recovering from a serious incident or that have an illness like cancer. 

They can help with injections, wound care, and comprehensively monitor the patient's health. Companion care services, like housekeeping, are not usually offered by skilled nurses.  

Respite care is another type of care to consider. Respite care provides you and your love with a break from each other. Respite care can be in the form of someone coming to the home to sit with your loved one or a facility like an adult daycare. 

Your loved one can participate in a fun outing or something fun. It helps them meet their social needs while providing you with a break from the responsibility of caring for them. Respite care can help ensure you are taking care of yourself as well. 


Non-medical care comes in the form of companion care and personal care. Companion care provides the lowest amount of hands-on care. The caregivers do not come to provide medical assistance. They are there to provide social interactions. At times companion caregivers can also help with light housekeeping duties and assist in running errands. Companion caregivers are not required to have formal licensure to carry out their duties. Personal care is the next level up from companion care. These are often Certified Nursing Assistants or Home Health Aides. They normally have certification and training that allows them to do their job well. Personal caregivers help with things like toileting, bathing, and dressing.  

How to Vet a Caregiver to Come in Your Home 

When going through the process of hiring home care in Memphis Tn it is important to determine the type and level of care needed. Are you looking for someone to assist with errands and to provide companionship to the person you care for? DO you need a caregiver that can assist with medication management? Do you need twenty-four-seven care or just someone to help out a few hours here and there throughout the week? Once you have figured out what you need; it's time to decide if you are going to hire a person or go through an agency. Here is what you should know about each option.

Independent or Agency

You will often spend less money hiring independently, but there is more work on your end to manage those you hire and make sure they are safe. 

If you decide hiring independently is best for you, make sure that you ask those you know and trust for recommendations. Going through an agency will provide you with more coverage; like if the person that normally provides care is sick. However, you have less control over who is providing care.  

Traits in Candidates

There are specific traits to look for when hiring a caregiver for your loved one. You want to find someone that is qualified to do the job and that is the right fit for your family. As you evaluate people for the job; here are some things to keep in mind.   Ask questions to inquire about their personality. It is important that they and the person they are caring for getting along. Ask about their hobbies and interest and see if they align with the person needing care.  Ask them how they will spend their time in the home. Will they decide to go for a walk with your loved one if they can watch tv instead. Ask them questions to determine how they will react in a difficult situation. Think about an incident that you had a hard time caring for your loved one. For example; have they ever fell and you had to figure out how to move them from one location to another? If they are diagnosed with dementia do they elope?  Ask the caregiver how they would react in these situations. Do not forget to ask for references.  

How To Get Started with the Employment Process

Because the person you have hired is working inside your home it is easy to forget that this is a business arrangement. It is a professional agreement and needs to be handled accordingly. It is important to make sure this arrangement is black and white. This means drafting a contract both people can sign and provides a guide for the working relationship. Caregivers are normally considered household employees; not independent contractors. You set their schedules and give them what they need.

You are responsible for hiring backup professionals if your caregiver falls through. Because of this, you are responsible for tasks such as withholding taxes and payroll.

There are many things included in a senior caregiver contract. The contract should include things such as the start date and where work will be completed. Basic scheduling, hours to be worked and tasks to be carried out should also be included. The amount of money to be paid, if paid time off is included, if holidays are included, and any other covered costs should also be discussed and put in the contract. 

Topics such as withholding and reporting taxes are also important to include. The expectations regarding social media are something many individuals forget about but should be addressed in the contract. The concept of raises and reviews and reasons that the caregiver can be fired should also be discussed and put in the contract. 

Success is the Goal

You have selected your caregiver. You know who is going to be in the home providing care for you. You want to make sure everyone is successful. The best way to do this is to create a daily structure that maps out the expectations outlined in the contract. A plan of care can help you carry out this task. Plans of care typically include daily care needs that will be carried out, such as assistance dressing, and when, household chores that will be completed, an activity list for the week, and medication schedule, and any relevant medical information.  

Hopefully, you are now equipped to find the perfect caregiver for your loved one. Whether you select an individual or an agency is up to you. 

You have more control over hiring and fire individuals than an agency. However, you can fire the agency in general and choose another one if you are unhappy with the services being provided. Agencies also carry out the management tasks.