Americans live longer today than they did a few generations ago. As a result, long-term care may be needed for a senior. Fortunately, families now have more options than ever before, and a senior care franchise can be of help in finding the right solution.

A nursing home was at one time the only choice for a senior who could no longer live alone or with family members. Today, this remains an option, but a person can also choose assisted living, home health care or several other options. Actually, a home healthcare franchise may be an option for any person looking to start their own business. 

Home health care is the preferred choice of many. The senior can remain in his or her own home while still receiving the necessary care. What are some of the benefits associated with this option?

Time for Caregivers

Caregivers need time to get away and recharge. This is something that is often overlooked by families but it is essential if the loved one will get the care he or she needs. A tired, overworked loved one is no benefit to the person who needs assistance. 

The home health aide steps in to assist the caregiver when he or she needs time away. This is especially helpful when family members live far away. The task of caring for the loved one may fall on one person and any help is appreciated when this is the case. 

Home Assessments

A person who serves as a caregiver is trained to assess his or her client on a regular basis and make recommendations on changes that may need to be made to the home. For instance, a person might need to have rugs removed so he or she doesn’t slip and fall. Another may need a hospital bed brought in to make getting a good night’s rest easier. 

The caregiver evaluates the home regularly, taking into account the changing needs of the client. Furthermore, he or she may speak with the medical team to determine if they have suggestions to improve the level of care. These individuals could catch things the family overlooks, as they have experience working with clients with different issues and know what these people need. 

Customized Schedules

The senior and his or her loved ones determine how often the caregiver comes to the home. It may be the family only needs someone one day a week. Others, however, find they need someone around the clock as they have other commitments and can’t be there for their loved ones. The right home health provider will find the person or persons perfect for spending time with the senior when family members can’t be there. 

The needs of the senior may change with time. For example, one person may only need care for a short period of time after being released from the hospital. Another senior might need continuous care around the clock. Providers obtained through an elder care franchise can accommodate either request or anything in between. 

Nutrition

Seniors often don’t eat as they should. It may be that they don’t want to spend the time cooking when they will be the only ones enjoying the meals. Others find they can no longer cook even if they would like to.

A home health worker can be of great help in this area. The worker will help the senior plan meals, grocery shop, and prepare meals that can simply be cooked or reheated. This ensures the person gets the required amounts of various nutrients to maintain his or her health. 

This is of great importance to all seniors. However, those who have recently been released from a nursing facility or hospital and those with a chronic condition are more at risk of being malnourished. Bed rest, any illness or injury, and the aging process all bring about a loss of lean body mass as well. Nutritional counseling and support will be of help in combating this common issue. 

Patient Monitoring

When a home health worker visits a senior on a regular basis, he or she gets to know this person. This is of great help when changes are observed, as the home health worker can provide information on how the person has changed to determine the underlying cause. While there are now devices that can assist with patient monitoring, having a person in the home to assist in this task is greatly appreciated. 

One-on-One Support

Families feel comfortable when they get to know the home health care worker. They see their loved one get the attention he or she deserves. In fact, the worker may become a part of the family as the relationship progresses. 

A strong bond develops between the home health provider and the senior. This bond is of great benefit to the elderly individual. In fact, it may even help to improve the client’s health.

Better Health Outcomes

Studies have been done to determine the benefits of home health care on health outcomes. Individuals with chronic diseases, such as diabetes or COPD, have fewer complications when they have a home health care team. In fact, the clinical results are comparable or better than those individuals who do not receive this type of care. 

Affordable

Families might express concern over the cost of long-term health care. The expense of a skilled nursing facility might even lead to the individual being forced to reside in a facility that is less than ideal. 

Home health care should always be an option, as it is a fraction of the cost of a skilled nursing facility. In fact, the National Association of Home Care reports home health care is less than 25% of the cost of a skilled nursing facility per day. The individual remains in a familiar environment without sacrificing his or her quality of life to do so. 

Medication Reminders

Men and women of every age often become confused as to whether they have taken their daily medication. It’s easy to assume this task has been handled because it becomes routine. However, missing even one dose can be dangerous for many individuals.

A home health worker ensures his or her clients take medications as directed. This may involve taking the medications and dividing them into separate compartments so the client and his or her loved ones can easily determine if a dose has been missed. This is something the family will need to discuss with the home health worker to determine who will be responsible for which tasks. 

Fewer Hospital Readmissions

Seniors who have recently been released from the hospital or another health care facility are at higher risk of an accident. They may be shaky and need assistance until they regain their strength. A home health worker may be of help until they can function alone once again. 

Furthermore, seniors in their own homes are less at risk of a fall that results in injuries. In fact, NIH reported on a study that found seniors are more likely to be injured from a fall in a health care setting than in their own homes. For this reason alone, palliative home care should be offered to any senior being released from the hospital as they will be less likely to need readmittance within a 30-day period. 

Independence for the Elderly

Quite a few seniors prefer to stay in their own homes but find they are unable to do so without help. The home health aide can provide this help. He or she might take on basic housekeeping tasks or simply serve as a companion to the client. It all depends on what the family desires and the client’s needs. 

A wide range of services is offered to provide this assistance. Home health workers often provide transportation for their clients or remind them to take their medication as directed by the doctor. Others prepare meals or help the senior bathe and get dressed.

Home health services are designed around the client. Each person is unique and what works for one person might not be appropriate for another. The client and his or her family work with the home health provider to determine what is needed and what the senior can do for him or herself. 

Companionship

The most important thing a home health worker can provide for any individual is companionship. Research has shown that elderly individuals are more at risk of problems when they are socially isolated. Their physical and mental health deteriorate when this is the case.

The home health worker may do nothing more than simply sit and talk with the senior or play board games. This is more than enough to help his or her health. It’s the interaction that is of great importance, and family members can feel comforted knowing their loved one is receiving this attention when they may not be able to provide it. 

If you are looking into home health care for a loved one, be aware that these are only some of the benefits associated with this type of care. There are several others, and families everywhere are finding they can help their loved one live the life he or she desires with this type of help. 

Consider this option when you have a loved one in need of assistance. It may be exactly what they need for the highest quality of life. Additionally, anyone looking to start a business should look into a home care franchise opportunity, as this is one industry that will only continue to grow and thrive in the coming years.

What Does a Home Health Aide Do?

 

Individuals who are interested in pursuing a highly sought-after job with exceptional stability in the growing field of healthcare, a home health aide may be just what they are looking for. However, for those who aren’t sure if this career path is right for them, it’s a good idea to learn more about it. Keep reading to find out everything about this job, what duties it requires, and information about starting a Senior home care franchise.

Basic Information About Home Health Aides

Home health aides provide an array of help to individuals with special needs, including those who have some type of disability, who are chronically ill, or who suffer cognitive impairment. They also provide care for seniors who need assistance with day-to-day tasks. Based on the specific job, the responsibilities of a home health aide has included any and everything from checking vital signs to helping with personal hygiene tasks, light housekeeping, shopping, and arranging transportation services.

There’s another vital service provided by home health aids -; they provide the people they care for with companionship. Unlike a personal care aid, who is directly employed by a client, a home health aid typically works for an agency. Providing Training and Support for Your Home Health Franchise is part of the responsibilities of the franchise owner, which means that workers receive specialized training.

The training provided allows them to take on additional tasks, such as working with ventilators, and administering medication. While this is true, the services must be performed under the supervision of a trained healthcare professional. A home health aide also plays an important role in the continuum of care.

They will track the progress and condition of clients, and report changes in the individual’s emotional, mental, or physical state. This helps to ensure that the person receives treatment when needed. It makes the home health aid an invaluable part of many people’s lives.

Where Did Do Home Health Aides Work?

Home health aides can work in an array of settings. There are many who are employed in the health care services field and who are staffed at private homes. Other facilities that employ home health aids include substance abuse facilities, mental health facilities, family or individual employment, nursing care facilities, and nursing homes or assisted living facilities for seniors.

There are some places that are more likely to hire home health aids than others. These include private care, home health, and hospice. These are the fields that most people find are easy to get into this field.

Why Enter the Field of Home Health?

It’s estimated there will be a growth of 48 percent in the home health aid field between the years 2012 and 2022. These positions offer unparalleled job security, along with a minimal time investment and training. In fact, in this position, there are no formal job requirements for working in this field.

There are some employees that prefer certified home health or hospice agencies, which means that employees must undergo the training and certification process offered by the National Association for Home Care & Hospice. While a college degree isn’t always necessary, there are some other attributes that are important for working in the home health aid field.

Someone in this position should be detail-oriented, have strong people skills, and skilled at effective time management. They also need to be comfortable handling physical tasks, such as helping turn or lift clients if they are disabled. Currently, the salary for home health aids is somewhat low, at just $20,820 per year, this is expected to change as those from the “Baby Boomer” generation turn 65 and there’s an increase in demand for qualified service providers.

Getting to Know the Job Market for Home Health Aide

There are approximately 911,500 home health aides in the U.S. currently. The market is expected to see significant growth (as mentioned above) in the next few years. In the upcoming decade, it’s expected the U.S. market alone is going to need an additional 436,300 home health aides, which makes this an excellent field to pursue. While home health aids are required across the country, the industry is mostly concentrated in the states of Ohio, Texas, and New York.

Starting a Home Health Care Franchise 

As mentioned above, the population is aging and the need for home health service providers is growing. If an individual believes this career is right for them, they may want to consider starting a home care assistance franchise. Keep in mind though, starting a franchise requires more time and effort than just working as an employee in this field, and the senior care franchise startup costs.

To ensure the success of a franchise, several steps need to be taken. An individual will need to create a business plan. This will serve as a blueprint of where the person is starting and what their goals are.

In this business plan, it’s important to decide what the goals are as a company, which services clients will receive, how to market the business to the community, how to structure the business related to management and employees and create a financial plan for the business. It’s also necessary to register your business with state officials. This is necessary for both licensing and tax purposes, as well as for payment reasons. To receive payment from Medicare or Medicaid, the business must be registered.

The process of registering with the state and receiving the appropriate licensing to conduct business in your state can take time, so it is important to be patient with the process. Another important step is to find and hiring staff. To be successful, it will be important to hire a highly qualified and dedicated team.

The staff, or home health aids, will be working directly with clients and play a large role in creating a successful business. In addition to this, it’s important to hire well-qualified management. Poor management will not be a positive reflection on the company and may cause clients to look elsewhere for the services that they are receiving.

The last step in this process is to begin searching for clients. This can be done through an array of advertising options, as well as through word of mouth. Advertising at local doctor’s offices, specifically those providing geriatric care, would be a great start along with the local pharmacies.

Growing a Home Health Aide Franchise

Once the franchise is established in the chosen area, it’s important to make sure it’s successful. A good way to do this is by continuing to invest in employee training and to provide support for the home health aides who are on the front lines, dealing with clients on a daily basis. Remember, training is an essential part of any health care business because methods, techniques, and requirements are always changing.

By investing in additional training for staff members, especially aids, is the perfect way to ensure the business remains up to date on the most important parts of the home health care industry. There are several ways a franchise owner can ensure the success of their staff. Some of these methods include helping with the cost of continuing education courses; offering flexibility in their work schedules for those who are going back to school, and offering platforms or times where the staff can get together and help one another.

Is the Role of a Home Health Aide or Franchise Owner the Right One?

The role of a home health aid is right for anyone who enjoys caring for other people. Both women and men can succeed in this career and provide care for others. A home health aid is someone who is willing to shower patients with care and love, which helps promote their overall well-being and healing.

It’s up to the home health aid to provide care for patients who are suffering from any ailment, disability, or another condition that limits their ability to care for themselves. However, being a home health aid is much more than just helping someone as they get through life or heal. It is all about building trust with a patient and their family when they are vulnerable.

A home health aid is also going to serve as the eyes and the ears of nurses and doctors. These individuals are often the first ones to recognize when there is a change in their patient’s condition. As a result, they are an invaluable part of an individual’s health and happiness.

Making the Most of a Career in the Home Health Aide Field

While not everyone is cut out to work as a home health aid, it can be an extremely rewarding experience for everyone involved. For those who are interested in becoming an aid or even in owning their own franchise in their hometown, learning as much as possible about the industry first is a must. By doing this, a person will have a full understanding of what is expected in this field and how to become a top provider of these services.

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