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My mother has had 24/7 home care since September. The weekend aide has been there since then. The weekday aide has been there for about a month. Neither of them celebrate Christmas, but it seems like I should give them an end-of-the-year tip. How should I go about judging the amount based on the time they've been employed. We like them both. (A week's pay is obviously not feasible since it costs a fortune.) Thanks.

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My friends in Long Island and NYc were given one week worth of pay as Christmas bonus. They work 24/7.
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cwillie, I agree with you. My family also gets gifts that cost no more than %15-$20. Giving any more than $20 to me seems ridiculous. And I'll give cash.
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the assisted living facility where my mother lives sends out a printed notice for year end bonuses 4 care givers. I prefer slipping gift certificates 4 grocery stores 2 my favorite care-givers, nurses, housekeepers...we ALL eat
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This is so very subjective, different people have wildly different expectations about what an appropriate gift may be. I know that I personally don't give gifts to family that cost more than $15 - $20, so shelling out more than that as a tip seems overly generous, but that is just me. And I also agree that a cash bonus or a gift card (if you are certain it is for a place they shop) is the way to go, nobody really wants another candle, goofy mug, christmas ornament etc, and even gifts of candy or other food items could be sabotaging their new year's diet resolution and not be appreciated.
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I think it is a horrible restriction of any agency to prevent tip giving. So many assumptions have been passed on from different areas of healthcare without respect or thought. A nurse is different from a home health aide - a nurse has a profession,authority, respect, a career with career ladder- home health aides do all kinds of home cleanup work, meal making, they stay with many families over time - they are thrilled to receive money at holiday time or end of year.

The relationship is different for someone present in a home, for many hours, on a regular basis, from professionals who arrive in many homes, briefly, to assess and treat.

I feel insulted if an agency steps in the middle - they fear individual aides making arrangements on their own, worry about upsetting families, but I think a family-caregiver bond and respect is irreplaceable, and they should encourage families with appreciation, to show their value of ongoing aides. Agencies do not offer career ladder training, just an hourly rate (relatively low) and only skills training sessions periodically.

If you tip the mailman, the trash man, a waitress, hotel personnel, etc, by all means tip the home health aides, and because most are scraping by, money is best as part of a thank you.
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I will probably give them each $50-$100 in cash.
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I'm at a crossroads as to what I'll do. To the CareGiver that comes in 3 mornings a week, I think $20. To the night CG's, $10, to a CG that comes once a week, not sure. Maybe just a gift of bananas. To the CG that comes 2 mornings a week, $10. And maybe I'll cha nge my mind.
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I tip our 24 hour aides $10 per day all year round and was wondering should I give extra for the holidays?
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I'm going to quote my son on this one : "Money is NEVER unappreciated".
Most caregivers (no matter their education level or qualifications) don't make enough to justify the "nasty" parts of the jobs we do..out of love. (And if you don't come to love your client, then I feel sorry for you) Money was the reason I worked 2 jobs for several years and money was the most appreciated gift. My client's family HIRED me because they simply could not care for mom any more--they all knew the exhaustion and frustration of the endlessness of caring for her.
For me, it was my JOB and I did it with pride and respected my client. Being respected in turn just made me feel valued and want to do a better job. One of my saddest days of my life was the day we moved her into a NH. Broke my heart, I cried all the way home.
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Personally I would not tip with "money" a care giver for fear that that would influence the ones that got money over the ones that did not. I would think a sincere, verbal, "tip" would be sufficient.
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If you're already paying facility, that's already too much. They do think they're doing you a big favor by taking your loved one to bathroom.....they much rather have them sit in s*it all day.
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I gave the equivalent of the daily rate to my mom's memory care facility for the staff donation request

I also have private aides with her 12 hours a day - except for one or two steady ones it is a revolving door and some only do one shift a week - among the six I'm tipping, one gets $100, one gets $50 and the rest get $20 and all get a small box of See's candy
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When my sister was alive we had a wonderful nurse who took care of her 5 days a week. At Christmas time my mother gave gifts to her and her 3 children. We could not have taken care of my sister at home without her help. I don't know which is best cash or a gift card. A gift would be appreciated. 
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My Mom's AL facility campaigned in their daily newsletter for a month asking the residents to purchase 20.00 gift cards to "help make the holidays brighter" for the staff. Several residents were confused, thought it was a requirement, and were overheard asking the staff how to buy them. They were told to give their money to a representative on the staff who would make the purchase for them. As many of the residents no longer manage their own finances, I thought this seemed inappropriate. Especially since we learned the hard way in Mom's first year in AL that companionship is not incuded in the fee schedule. All business, no real individual attention or connection.
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Or, you can call it a bonus.
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I see nothing at all wrong with cash. If it seems cold to you, include a tiny present, like a candle, along with the money.

I see nothing demeaning about tipping a caregiver who is only getting $10 to $13 an hour. Maybe it's different for an RN or LPN. My thinking is that if the caregiver is good, they are saving your life and sanity, and keeping your loved one happier. Don't they deserve a nice gift of money more than your lazy, know-it-all sister-in-law?

If you can't afford much, then when you give it to him/her, say, "I wish it could be a million dollars!"
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Forgot to clarify, I left the checking-in part-timers a gift card for gas, or Starbucks, or Walmart (or wherever it is they said they shopped, when we had conversations). Some of them drove in from the next county, in blizzards, just to make sure mom was up, dressed, diaper changed, and fed.
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I used to give the 2-hours-just-checking-in part-timers a gift card, they changed all the time on weekends. I would routinely buy a little extra groceries (some nice bread or donuts or fruit) and insist the regular caregivers take it with them on the way home (I would bag it up and put it out in their cars before leaving). Caregivers don't really want crumbs from your table, cookies or candy (unless they have families, and kids) - cash is best. I don't care WHO says WHAT, they deserve a nice tip, under the table or not, they have a filthy hard job. ... My mother's former caregiver is getting a gift card to the local grocery store every single Christmas till one of us dies. I could not possibly have lived through my mother's dementia without this wonderful woman's help. She went above and beyond for years.
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My client's family routinely gifted me $100 at Christmas and for my birthday. They always said they couldn't have managed mom w/o me. It was OK with my agency. They also "tipped me" each month, by adding to my base salary through the company's payroll, so I was making about $15 an hour, not the $9 an hour the co paid. It was all above board and no coercion. I still would have worked as hard, but the extra money really was appreciated and needed!
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Celebrate a Happy New Year! Celebrating a different faith or culture's new year is fun too, if you know how to get it right.
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A tip is different than a gift.
A tip to a health care professional seems demeaning, imo.
Presentation is everything, wrap it up nice, or put the gift in a pretty card.
Gifts during the year are nice too.
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Be in your heart and be clear on this being a Thank You tip and keep within your financial means. I wouldn't tip more than I would a wait person for good service for a nice meal in a restaurant. I think it best to give $25 cash with a nice note of appreciation - perhaps highlighting some specific care and thoughtfulness of theirs throughout the year. Cash isn't taxed and checks may be; many gift cards are not used. I believe billions or perhaps millions of dollars in 'gift cards' are not redeemed. Just my thought.
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I give the full time caregiver $200.00. And the part time caregiver $100.00. I don't check with the agency. They deserve it! My mother has dementia and it's. It always easy!
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If one knows the caregiver's home address, Google it to see what stores are close by.

One of my Dad's caregivers use to cook from scratch, and she would bring him extras she had cooked. He loved her cooking. Her sisters would give her deserts for "Mr. Bob". So in her case, a grocery store coupon would work :)
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Cash is the best as they may need it to pay bills or buy food or winter clothing. An analysis of gift card purchases shows that recipients pay an additional $17-$43 when the card is redeemed. That could be a burden for low wage care givers.
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The "weeks's pay" guideline is based upon net to the home caregiver, usually $10-$13/hour, and not what you pay the agency.
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I still really question if it is legal for a health care provider to accept money tips. I am a nurse, and it is my understanding it is a big NO NO. I would get them each a big tray of cookies or some banana bread or something like that. NOT cash. A gift card might be pushing it, but better than cash.
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As an RN I never expected a tip.
Knowing how much the family spends on health care it does not compute.
However I would give cash not a gift card.
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shesmom

I see now. Thanks for the clarification. It's nice there are some decent medical people; too bad there are so few of the same in the Cleveland area.
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I don't celebrate Christmas either,however, I do have customers who like to give an appreciation gift anyway. Sometimes it's a nice box of chocolate,one actually gave me a thankyou card with $100.00 in it! If they like chocolates do that or if they like wine or something,how about that or a simple piece of jewelry,,,it does not need to be money
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