With seniors’ health problems on the rise, as their health begins to decline and family harmony is irreversibly altered, many families are faced with the difficult choice of providing 24-hour home care for their loved ones. Considering different options and looking for the best solution for a senior can be a challenge. At such times, it’s worth considering the option of using a care agency. This solution has many advantages, but the main one is that the senior is cared for in the comfort of home. At the same time, the cost of such care is competitive with 24-hour inpatient care. Although the need for monthly financial resources is essential, there are ways to reduce the expense of 24-hour home care without sacrificing the quality of care for the elderly. In this text, we provide practical tips to help you make the right decision and ensure the best conditions for your loved one.
What is 24-hour home care for seniors?
Round-the-clock home care is a key solution for seniors who, for a variety of reasons, require constant support, but still wish to remain in their home environment. It’s a service that not only supports seniors in daily activities but also gives them a sense of security and dignity. Caregivers are not only a help to them, but also a support and companionship, which is of great importance in terms of seniors’ quality of life.
Care companies are meeting the needs of seniors by offering professional and comprehensive care services under the 24-hour home care model. This solution allows seniors to enjoy life in their own homes while having the assistance of a qualified caregiver. Caregivers from certified care agencies not only provide support in daily chores but also build lasting and valuable relationships with seniors.
Opting for 24-hour home care is a choice that allows seniors to live with dignity and comfort in their own homes. In addition, this model gives seniors and their families a sense of security, which is extremely important in the lives of seniors and their families. Hrily certified care agencies are trustworthy partners in this important life decision.
How long is 24-hour care for seniors?
Choosing the right period of care for a senior is a key issue that requires thought on the part of both the family and the caregiver. Mostly, one caregiver stays with a senior for 6 to 10 weeks. After this time, another caregiver comes to the client, which allows for continuity of care and gives caregivers time to rest and recuperate.
The length of the care period is strictly dependent on the individual needs of the senior and the family’s preferences. Care services can be provided:
- For a short, predetermined period, which can be ideal for recovery from hospitalization or other temporary situations.
- For a long period, when the senior requires permanent, long-term care.
- Indefinitely, which gives both parties a sense of stability and security.
It is important to remember that the period of care can always be changed and negotiated. Care agencies are very flexible in this area and are ready to adapt to the changing circumstances and needs of the family and the senior. The goal is to find a solution that will provide the senior with adequate care, while at the same time being beneficial to all parties involved in the care process.
What are ways to lower rates for 24-hour care?
Often, seniors are unable to cover the costs of their caregiver on their own, and the family’s financial capabilities are limited. In such a situation, any way to lower the cost of 24-hour home care is at a premium. So are there ways to lower rates for 24-hour care? Below are proven methods that should help reduce expenses while not negatively affecting the safety and comfort of the senior citizen receiving caregiver assistance.
It is worth noting the various forms of financial support available to seniors and their families. It is possible to obtain funding from various sources, such as government programs, local initiatives, or foundations that help seniors. In addition, negotiating the terms of a contract with a care agency can also help reduce the monthly cost of services. In some cases, it may also be worth considering working with a caregiver on a self-employed basis, which can be more financially advantageous. These and other suggestions are discussed later in the article.
It is crucial that when looking for savings, you never lose sight of the priority of providing safe and dignified care for your seniors. Therefore, we recommend that you carefully examine all available options and choose the one that best meets your senior’s needs, but at the same time makes economic sense.
Limit the responsibilities of the caregiver
When establishing the terms of cooperation with a care agency, it will be necessary to interview to determine the responsibilities of the caregiver. The agency will carefully inquire about the senior’s needs and the family’s expectations. It is worth knowing that the more tasks assigned to the caregiver, the higher the rate for his services may be. That’s why it’s crucial to consider what the senior and family can give up, what they can do on their own, and what must be outsourced to the caregiver.
For example, when it comes to shopping, perhaps someone in the family can do it, or there is an option to order it online with home delivery. In that case, this duty will be subtracted from the caregiver’s list of tasks. Also, consider whether ironing is an activity that the caregiver must do. It may be a task that can be dispensed with or can be delegated to another person.
Also, if possible, try to leave the seniors with as many chores as possible to do on their own. Seniors who are active and have a sense of duty are often more motivated, feel needed and thus stay physically and mentally fit longer. Therefore, before assigning all household chores to a caregiver, consider which ones the senior can do on his or her own while remaining safe and comfortable.
Require lower qualifications
When hiring a caregiver for a senior citizen, it’s worth considering which qualifications are necessary and which can be dispensed with to reduce the cost of the service. Undoubtedly, certain skills and certifications directly affect a senior’s safety and comfort, and these are essential. However, it is worth analyzing whether all the requirements you have set are essential.
For example, a German language certificate may be important, but at the same time, it limits the pool of available caregivers. You may want to consider accepting someone with a slightly lower language level, which could translate into lower rates. A lot of information can be provided to the caregiver in writing, and the extra time spent on explanations can be a good investment to reduce costs.
Expenses can also be reduced by not requiring the caregiver to have a driver’s license. For example, if the caregiver drives the senior to a specific location once a week, consider whether the caregiver must have this document. Perhaps there are other methods of transportation or a family member can help transport the senior. It’s worth looking for alternatives that can help reduce costs while not compromising the quality of care.
When looking for round-the-clock care for seniors, it is worth paying attention to the structure of the market and the way care agencies operate. In many cases, the process of arranging care for the elderly is divided between two different companies – one is responsible for recruiting families in need of care, and the other is responsible for sourcing candidates for caregivers. Such a situation entails the need to divide the remuneration between the two institutions, which may translate into higher rates for care services.
Fortunately, the market is changing and there are more and more companies that decide to manage the whole process on their own. This means that one company is responsible for both the recruitment of families and caregivers, which translates into faster circulation of information, better communication, and greater efficiency. What’s more, this approach often allows for lower service costs, which is beneficial for both families and caregivers.
Therefore, when choosing a care agency, it is worth paying attention to whether the company operates independently or uses the services of intermediaries. Choosing an agency that takes full responsibility for the services provided can help you find a more financially advantageous option for round-the-clock care for your senior.
Provisions in the contract
Choosing the right senior care agency and determining the optimal terms of cooperation are key issues that can significantly affect the final cost of the service. One of the elements that is worth paying special attention to is the provisions contained in the care agreement. They can have a decisive impact on the amount of final expenses related to caring for a loved one.
It is recommended that before making a final decision, you contact several different care agencies and ask them to provide you with model contracts, which should be carefully and unhurriedly analyzed. Particular attention should be paid to possible additional fees that may be charged during the summer, Christmas, or after the death of the person in care.
Finding out how long after the end of the care service can help avoid unpleasant financial surprises.
Another aspect that can affect the rate is the distance that the caregiver has to travel to reach the senior’s place of residence. The closer the caregiver lives, the potentially lower the costs associated with their travel can be.
Paying attention to these and other details included in the contract will allow you to thoroughly understand the terms of cooperation and choose the most financially advantageous option while at the same time providing the senior with professional and attentive care.
Interruptions in care
Providing round-the-clock care for an elderly person can be challenging, especially when we are unable to arrange ongoing assistance for our loved ones. Sometimes, however, despite the limitations, the family can take over some of the caring responsibilities, thus giving the professional caregiver a break and reducing the costs associated with their services.
This is especially true during periods when the family has more free time, such as during summer holidays or holidays. In such cases, a clause can be included in the contract with the care agency allowing for a break in the provision of services and thus the suspension of fees.
However, it is important to carefully establish and plan such break periods, specifying who, when, and how will be able to take care of the senior. Of course, this is only possible if the family has the right skills and resources to provide safe and comfortable care for the senior.
Scheduling breaks in care and delegating responsibilities to family can be an effective way to reduce the costs associated with caring for an elderly person, while still giving them the peace and support they need.
Certified Care Agencies
Deciding on the right care agency is a key element in the process of organizing care for an elderly person. Caregiver companies differ from each other in many ways, including the cost and efficiency level of their services.
Certified care agencies that optimize their processes and use modern technology often have a competitive advantage. Automating many aspects of your business allows you to offer more competitive rates while also providing high-quality service.
The Hrily Care Service platform is a place where you can find care services only from verified and certified agencies. These companies use the Hrily portal to manage all aspects of their business, which guarantees efficient and trouble-free service delivery. Additionally, the platform offers dedicated portals to offer home care services as well as to recruit caregivers for the elderly.
By using the services of certified care agencies, you can be sure that the care of your loved one will be provided at the highest level and the costs of services will be optimized.
More free time for the caregiver of an elderly person
Proper organization of care for the elderly can benefit not only the caregiver himself but also his family and carer. If the state of health of the elderly person and the organizational capacity of the family allow it, it is worth considering the option of giving the caregiver one or two days off per week.
Such an approach can significantly affect the satisfaction and motivation of the caregiver, who, thanks to the opportunity to take advantage of free time, will be able to regain strength and energy for further work. Moreover, the shorter working time of the caregiver is a solid argument for negotiating the care rate, which can help to reduce the cost of the service. For the family, this is an opportunity to build a more partnership-based and mutually respectful relationship with the caregiver, which in turn translates into a better quality of care provided. On the other hand, the senior, surrounded by care and attention, gains the opportunity to establish a closer relationship with the caregiver, which undoubtedly affects his well-being and quality of life.
All in all, giving the caregiver free time is a win-win solution. So, it is worth considering such an option when planning care for a close elderly person.
Co-financing of care
The costs of professional care for the elderly can be a significant financial burden for many families. Fortunately, depending on the region, different support programs allow you to obtain funding from public and private institutions.
An example is Germany, where the care allowance is granted according to the degree of care needs of the elderly person. The current rates are as follows:
- nursing grade 2 – 316 EUR
- nursing grade 3 – 545 EUR
- nursing grade 4 – 728 EUR
- care grade 5 – 901 EUR
With good news comes also the information that from 1 January 2024 these amounts will be increased, which will further ease families’ budgets:
- nursing grade 2 – EUR 332
- nursing grade 3 – 572 EUR
- nursing grade 4 – EUR 764
- nursing grade 5 – 946 EUR
In addition to care allowances, there are also other options for co-financing care for the elderly. These may depend on the specific location of care, as well as the individual situation of the family and the senior.
We encourage you to check the available funding options in local institutions, offices, or NGOs. It may turn out that your loved one may apply for such help. Thanks to such support, care for the elderly will become less financially burdensome, and at the same time more accessible and comfortable for all parties.
What can a senior or family do for an elderly caregiver?
In the search for the best care for a senior, it is worth thinking not only about financial issues but also about what the family can do to make the job of a caregiver more rewarding. Sometimes small gestures or extra comforts may make the caregiver willing to accept lower wages because they will feel valued and respected.
Examples of such activities are:
- Language learning: If seniors and household members have the opportunity and desire to teach a tutor the language, it will certainly be a win-win situation. Learning the language from a senior or family member can be an added value for the caregiver.
- Flexibility in working hours: The possibility to arrange a flexible working schedule where the caregiver can attend language courses or other training while the caregiver is at the same time provided by another person.
- An additional source of income: Helping to find an additional source of income in the area can also be a valuable support for the caregiver.
- Remote work: Accepting that the caregiver can work remotely at the same time, performing non-involving and flexible tasks that can be interrupted at any time.
The family and seniors must consider together what they can offer and then discuss these proposals with the caregiver. Open communication and mutual understanding of needs are the basis for developing conditions of cooperation that will be satisfactory for everyone.