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I am at the point where I need to bring caregivers into our home to care for DH with Lewy Body Disease. I'm not worried about the hiring process, but I am distressed about the thought of having someone else underfoot. Anyone have thoughts on this? Blessings, Jamie

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Maybe the caregiver felt like Big Brother was watching. Some employees don't care, others find it very unsettling even when that employee is doing her job correctly.
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@freqflyer that's why I said hidden cameras, I see no purpose in having cameras unless they're hidden. I'm not sure if the friend suggested just cameras or hidden cameras. When people know they're being watched, they're usually on they're best behavior. If your going to tell you have the cameras and the purpose, why wouldn't a caretaker want you to be secure in knowing your loved one is being well cared for??
I work as a healthcare provider for 27 years, and in homes for about 10 years, I never had problems with cameras. I always thought to myself, "If this was me or my parent, I would want my family to take every precaution to make sure no one is secretly abusing me!" Sorry the caretaker left, it just makes me wonder why?
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Sometimes cameras and recording devices can back fire, too. My Boss' wife had Alzheimer's and he had a wonderful caregiver who his wife had bonded with for almost a year.

Friends told him to install cameras, which he did, and he told the caregiver about the cameras. He mainly wanted to see how his wife was doing. After a week the caregiver quit, as the cameras were very unnerving to her as they were real-time where he could watch from his computer.

Trying to find new caregivers who his wife would bond with was next to impossible. She was in her final stage and very much needed routine. He tried to get the other caregiver back, but she had moved on to a new client. He wished he never listened to his friends.
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Thank you all so very much for your comments. It really helps me to start thinking about this topic. In the meantime, my 96 year old Dad had to have surgery and I'm focusing on skilled nursing facilities for his discharge. When it rains, it pours. Again, Thanks so much.
Jamie
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When an elderly parent/spouse have memory problems, I strongly suggest you install HIDDEN cameras or audio recording device(s). We hired a caregiver for my mom, the lady was so sweet and loving towards our mom, truely an angel sent from heaven, or so we thought. I installed hidden audio only to learn, when no one was around, the angel sent from heaven was not treating my mom the same as she did when we were around. And my mom LOVED THIS WOMAN!!! The caretaker was ignorning my mom, being rude to my mom, if my mom fell asleep in a chair in the den, the caretaker didn't even wake her up to help her to her room and into her bed. My mom would wake up 3 or 4 o'clock in the morning, clearly confused, wondering around the house, talking to herself. Bottom line, you know and trust what people show you. People are usually at their best when everyone's looking at them, you'll be surprise to find what some folks do when they BELIEVE no one's looking or listening.
Good luck!!
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ReneeMary--
With all due respect, had my clients family micromanaged and helicoptered ME, I would have quit. Yes, I expected that they would watch me and want to know what was going on...that's why we HAD to keep meticulous records of every day we worked, what we did, where we went, if she spent money, etc., I was to account for all that. A member of the family signed off on each day's work. Any disagreements were dealt with swiftly and maturely. I know that some people have had bad experiences with caregivers, but that is why you go with a reputable agency and remain in contact with the aide and keep communicating.

Maybe my experiences were not the norm. I like to think they were. You don't want a caregiver to feel like they're being watched and judged all day--you cannot do a good job if you feel you're under a microscope.

Just my opinion.
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My husband has had a caregiver since 7/2014. Go with a reputable agency and interview 2 or 3. I work while the caregiver is here but I did have a few problems at first which they said is normal. Had to be on the "right page". He has dementia and at first he knew he had a caregiver but not now. It is not cheap but I can not leave him alone is how it started out. Have a lock box with the house key in it, like a realtor box, you are to not have SS numbers, credit cards,jewelry,etc or money around--- I have a room that I lock up and a big cabinet that is locked. I make sure that they have all the supplies like diapers, wipes, gloves, etc. IT is hard at first to have a stranger in our home but now after 3 yrs he is like part of our family. He does do a few things to help me out also. GOD be with you.
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Anabel, please note that the Administrative Staff will probably erase any mention of the caregiving company, where you work. It's a conflict of interest as there are caregiving companies that pay for advertisements on the forums.
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I work for a home care agency. It's part of the home care agency's responsibility to screen and reassure that they can assist you in finding the best caregiver possible. They typically provide free consultations where you can ask the necessary questions.

I'd recommend going through a home care agency because they can handle the liability issues if a situation occurs.

If you have any further questions, contact me at your earliest convenience or follow me. I'd be more than happy to help you.
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Caregiver contract
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http://www.carealliance.ie/userfiles/file/Lit%20Review%20Key%20Findings%20%20Final.pdf


Check out this report
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Interesting perspective ReneeMary! Reminds me of a post by Shesmom 2 years ago...
"Do we need to have a caregiver at Thanksgiving table?"
Fun read.
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YES, hover. YES, micromanage. YES, be a helicopter caregiver. This isn't a guest in your home - s/he's an employee, someone you are paying to do a job. You want your loved one to be safe from physical, emotional or financial abuse, and sometimes that isn't apparent right away. We had the "ideal" caregiver, oh so sweet, Mom loved her... EXCEPT that she was forging checks from Mom's checkbook! There are unfortunately people out there who are very skilled at gaining an elder's trust (and the family's trust) and then take advantage of them. There is a tendency to be socially courteous and treat the paid caregiver like a guest... do they have a comfortable place for a break? is this or that asking too much? should you provide snacks? No, no no! Keep it on a business level. Yes, they can and should develop a trusting relationship with the patient, but for you, the family member, be on guard! This is a business and you have every right to make sure things are done properly and to YOUR and YOUR PARENT's satisfaction (not the other way around!)
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Oh, one thing to think about, keep the caregiver that your husband likes, even though she might not do everything you want her to do.

At the beginning when I had a caregiver for my Dad, I wasn't thinking about Dad per say, and I was ready to ask the Agency to send someone else.... until I asked my Dad who was his favorite caregiver and why. That changed my mind, as Dad said he was always happy to see her when it was time to get up in the morning, he liked her personality and couldn't wait to enjoy his day.
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I worked for one of the "major" companies. I know that my client had been through 3 caregivers before me, they lasted less than one day. Each was found wanting in some respect.

Being patient with the process--it's a new person in the house, in your DH's life, but there to help the WHOLE family. I was lucky, I guess, my client loved me and I loved her from day one. We are the same religion (that was VERY important, in our situation) I was not a "kid", I spoke English (that seems mildly racist, but my client with Parkinson's was hard at times to understand, so I had to be able to "know" what she was saying.) I was respectful of my place in the home, and gradually, just became one of the family. Most of my time with her was cleaning her "suite", laundry, running errands, sometimes cooking, as she loved to do it and could no longer be safely around the oven. I was, in essence, her arms and legs. Her family accepted me gratefully and now that I am in the same position with my own mother, I REALIZE how much of a burden I took from them. Mom was cared for, she was happy, and not bugging them 24/7 for little things--and then they were able to have quality time with her and not feel angry and overwhelmed.

As for having a place to sit and relax myself--I don't think I EVER sat down during the day. I never had a break, I never had lunch...I ran from 9 am to 4 pm. While that may not have been "right" it's what worked for us.

Every situation is different. You must be flexible, the caregiver must be a good match. Be patient with them as they come to know your DH. Trust them. If you
'hover' over them, they will feel uncomfortable. You MUST have a certain level of trust, and that may take a little while to achieve. Hopefully, you will find a good match for your family and you will rest a little and enjoy some personal time.

When I was with my client, I rarely even saw the "family". It WAS a huge house, and all, but once I showed up for work, daughter was GONE and we had the house to ourselves.
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One very important word is "Boundaries " !!! Establish these between you and the caregiver, and also the expectation of each of you !! Blessings to all of you !!
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So maybe set them up with their own seating area to relax, have a snack so they won't be underfoot. When I was working up a sweat, I did not want to join the fam or use the upholstered livingroom furniture, but where to sit?
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Be prepared to not have all your expectations met and be flexible - I personally found it very difficult to share space with caregivers for mom - it probably would have been better if there was more room in the house

That said with her move to memory care I continue to have caregivers with her and while we have a couple of steady ones it is very difficult to get consistency for a 4 hour shift in the afternoon and folks with dementia require a caregiver with a special skill set - the agency can't send just anyone

Come back and let us know how it goes
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Make a written care plan. Be sure the caregiver has clear list of duties and expectations.

By starting off with a very well defined business relationship, you and they will function much better. Most difficulties come from mismatched expectations...yours and theirs. Take the time to think through all the things you want the caregiver to do and write it all down.
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Having a caregiver solution is better than not having one at all. Dive in, and learn from the experience. The old saying: if at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Good that you are taking proactive stance. Good luck!
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Jj ff gave you an excellent answer. And pay attention to the helicopter spouse part. Do not become a micromanager either. What works for you may.not and probably will not work for the caregivers. They will figure out what works best for them. Give the caregivers space to do so.
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I don't have caregivers in the home, but they do take Mom out for outings. We definitely have to rotate around to see who she's most comfortable with, and that's why I also like going with a company vs individual. We can try different caregivers until we find a decent match.
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Jamie, it's an adjustment having someone new in the house, they have their own way of doing things.... and there will be a learning process for both you and the caregiver.

For my very elderly Dad, I hired caregivers from a national firm. The Rep came to the house to interview me and my Dad, and in turn I was interviewing her. She asked a lot of good questions, and asked me to show her the house. She was concerned about the stairs since my Dad was a fall risk.

The first couple of caregivers were very good but not quite a good match. The 3rd one was a winner. So I asked the firm if they could schedule her, if available. She was with my Dad for over a year. They had a lot in common in their childhood, and had the same crazy sense of humor. Dad had another caregiver for the weekend, another excellent match, so also was with him for year :)

Dad also had overnight caregivers, and these were women who did only overnight shifts, so they stayed awake during the whole night.  If they heard Dad get up, they would go to his room to help him to the bathroom. 

Now I didn't live with my Dad, so I let the caregivers do their work how ever they wanted. They had to prepare meals for my Dad. One was pretty much TV dinner style, which was ok with me, and Dad didn't complain. The weekend caregiver loved to cook so she would bring left overs from home which Dad really enjoyed, plus home made cookies.

Find a caregiver who is good with your husband, and someone you feel you can talk to like a friend. In fact, after you are comfortable with the person, it will be your time to do things you want to do. Don't become a helicopter spouse.
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