After we had a caregiver steal money from my dad (91 yrs) we put in a Nest security camera in his living room to 1. make sure he's ok and 2. keep an eye on things during the day when the caregiver is there. The new caregiver makes his food then heads straight the recliner and literally lays on it all day. She does not know that the security camera is in the room. Is that normal for caregivers to pretty much lay or sit around all day? Its too hot to go outside and they sit and watch t.v.. If its normal then I'll bite my tongue. And he appears to get along ok with her when she engages in coversation.

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I am a caregiver and also manage a group of caregivers who serve those needing assistance. Our rule is when we enter the home we are looking for something to do. Duties include the clients personal care as needed like showering / washing hair, dressing, meds given, vital signs taken, meals prepared, light housekeeping like keeping counters wiped down, kitchen cleaned ..dishes put away, bathroom cleaned, trash disposed of, bed linens changed, kitchen floor swept, clients laundry, errands, and transportation to appointments or outside home activities. We are CAREgivers not sitters. Depending on the level of care needed and time required, there may be time for sitting / down time while visiting with the client but duties come first. This Industry often does draw the lazy. Perhaps a daily checklist would serve helpful along with daily notes charted every couple of hours. We like to be the families window for seeing how their loved ones day went through our documentation. In addition to care and safety, a caregivers role should be to help provide and maintain the life, routine, and environment the client needs and has been accustomed to while still realizing their home is their castle and house rules are to be respected. Hope this helps.
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Cbp711 Jul 2018
Wish you had been my Mom’s caregiver.
I am a caregiver. It sounds like you have a lazy or tired cg. It is not normal for a good cg to just sit, let alone lie, around. A good cg will find something to do to help the client or the client's family. I clean the kitchen, fix meals, clean the bathroom, and the client's bedroom, wash and dry their clothes and put them up. A good cg can find things to do. Yes, I sit with my client and watch TV for 30 minutes then engage her in a conversation about what we just saw or engage her during commercials. I wheel her that the bathroom and bathe her and fix her hair and makeup. I wheel her outside through the flower garden. I put her in the car and go for a ride or to the grocery store or Wal Mart. There are so many things to do! Unless you have given strict instructions not to leave his side, the cg should be doing something...singing, reading to him, so many other things than watching TV.
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What exactly did you agree on when she was hired, did you give her a list of tasks to get accomplished every day? Some people are energizer bunnies who can't sit down and would go stir crazy if they can't keep busy, others... not so much. I'd say you need to come up with a checklist of things to do and sit down with her to discuss the terms of her contract, after that as long as she is accomplishing those things and getting along well with your LO she should be free to fill the remaining time as she chooses.
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When we engaged caregivers we found the same thing happening. We put together a checklist, but we included the agency, Mom (the care recipient), the main caregiver, and myself.

We discussed the parameters of the contract (what the caregivers could/could not do) and from there made daily/weekly/bi-weekly tasks and care that needed to be done. These tasks and care included days for bathing/grooming, light household chores, Mom's favorite shows and activities. Believe it or not it worked!

A couple of tips: Keep the list to one piece of paper and don't forget to allow for a date and initials next to each task/care duty. We even left a couple of lines for "Other" and you would be surprised at what was entered. The caregivers really enjoyed it and every once in a while we would give them a gift card as a little bonus, it really does help to acknowledge them and the difficult job they are doing.

Mom was happier, the caregivers seemed to be, and most of all we felt like they were more engaged and actually were communicating with u on a more regular basis. Remember, they don't know what they are expected to do unless you tell them, they do not want to take advantage of anyone, they are there to help, so set guidelines - you will be glad you did!
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DonnaR Jul 2018
I am a caregiver and when you have a plan of care, everything is much easier for everyone.
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What is the caregiver supposed to be doing?
Is cleaning a part of the job description? If so is that being done?
Is bathing a part of the job? Is that done?
Is routine change of positions part of the job? It should be if he is not real mobile. At least every two hours there should be a change of positions or at least get up to go to the wash room if he is mobile.
Is meal preparation part of the job? Is that being done?
Is your Dad very verbal? If so the caregiver should be engaging in as much conversation as he can participate in.
Is the caregiver getting him involved in some sort of activity? Coloring, cards, reading to him, puzzles......
If everything is being done then there really is not more to do than to sit and watch TV.
You could modify the aspects of the job if you want. If light house cleaning is not part of this particular job description you might want to add it.
If helping him bathe and dress is not part of her morning you might want to add that.
The tasks of a caregiver evolve as the client declines so adding new tasks is not unusual.
But a discussion should be had about your expectations.
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We have a part-time caregiver, 4 hours six days a week. She prepares/cleans up breakfast, helps my dad shower, walks with him for "their walk." Makes lunch. And she does light housekeeping. Laundry, sweeping the floor, vacuums, Dusts. Just not heavy duty. But she is busy but not rushed. Major thing is to not expect them to keep moving all the time. Also, my dad talks to her more than to my mom and I. And she loves to organize. So my drawers stay tidy...

I think you could expect more from the care giver. Talk to her agency...
Helpful Answer (9)

If she’s good with your dad and he likes her and she feeds him and cleans up after herself and him, she’d be fine with me.
Helpful Answer (6)

I had similar frustrations. I made a daily checklist and reviewed it with anyone coming in to work with my m-i-l. I also told them if given a choice she will always choose not to do something and say no. She would be happy sitting in her chair and watching tv 24 hours a day. I have listed what days require showering, hair washing or washing up, physical activities ( getting up to walk every hour, physical therapy exercises on a sheet of paper, going outside when the weather allows), and mental activities (scrabble, cards, puzzles, crosswords). Some of the aides are really good with keeping her engaged while others sit and watch tv with her most of the time, which drives me crazy. I have found some of the aides have the philosophy of "she is 91, let her do what she wants". To which I reply "she is not able to make good decisions for herself, that is why we are here. If she does want she wants she will atrophy and end up in a nursing home, which is not what she wants."
If you are not happy I would ask the aide to do more and then give her specific ideas.
Helpful Answer (6)

Hello what is her job description? Is it is to feed your dad and clean up? Has she done that? Is it to keep your dad company? Is she doing that? If your dad sits and watches his shows, what is she supposed to do? Drag him outside in the heat? That could be dangerous. A walk outside might be good, but you have to be careful they don't walk too far, and he gets tired half way out. He could easily fall from a crack in the sidewalk.
If you have other tasks for her like light cleaning, laundry, change bedding, take out trash, she should be doing that. That might only take an hour or 2 a day.
If you don't then, why isn't it ok for her to keep him company? He enjoys it. She probably has to watch old reruns. That isn't a lot of fun after the 1st hour.
Unless you have a massive daily chore list, I don't see what the problem is. If she is off doing all these chores, will your dad get up and go looking for her?
She is right there with your dad. She is being a companion and keeping an eye on him. Unless she is ignoring the other duties, I don't see what the problem is. Your dad probably loves it.
In nursing homes residents sit and watch tv, watch the staff, and nap between meals. They are mostly in their rooms. Not a lot of talking going on. The staff yes, residents no.
They have activities, but only a small core group usually does them. A full hour of activies is usually a lot, and it wears them out. Most have to nap afterwards. Your lucky to keep their attention up to 30 mins. A lot bail in the 1st 10 mins.
There are activities you can look up online that they might do together. That might only interest your dad for so long. It can also agitate him if he knows his mind isnt what it used to be, and your asking him to use logic and thinking for a half hour project.
You might be looking at this from an active person standpoint. He is 91. If your paying her to be a companion, she is doing that. I think that in itself is worth something. Not a lot in the nursing home get 1 on 1 companion time.
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It all depends on what type caregiver was hired and what is in their contract, if there even is a contract.

If she is an independent caregiver,..... is she a sitter or a medical professional? If she is an independent caregiver, not working with an agency, there may not be a contract and therefore you need to get her services in writing of some type.

Not all caregivers, either independent or hired through an agency, clean or cook. You also can not demand it, if there is a contract and you are demanding something not specified in the contract.

Some caregivers are just there for medical assistance. meds, treating wounds, turning the patient, toileting, bathing etc. They are not required to clean. For that you have to hire a maid service or a different type of caregiver.

You can install cameras in your home. If you think she is stealing you can plant money somewhere and train the camera on the place the money is hidden. If she snoops, finds it and steals it and you have this on camera you can have her arrested.

Unfortunately, with my grandfather, we even had one through an agency that was failing to fulfill the duties specified in her contract, and also stole several items.

Sadly this is very common.

We went through at least four caregivers until we found a helpful, honest, trustworthy caregiver.

Unfortunately, many people do not read their contracts, or even have one, and then they have unrealistic expectations about the agreed upon duties of the caregiver.

Get it in writing. If it is not in writing it does not count.
Helpful Answer (6)
LeeMac Jul 2018
Better be sure surveillance is legal. If it is, I am sure there is a requirement to let the care giver know she is being filmed!!
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