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The 4 Qualities Homecare Patients Want to Find in a Caregiver

Homecare is a blessing for the ill, where you can be in your own home with the appropriate care. It is also a dynamic experience for caregivers, lending more flexibility of schedule with slightly different protocol, often less rigid than those in a hospital facility. The 1:1 ratio also avails the opportunity to forge an eternal nurse and patient bond.

Those distinct characteristics of the job lend weight to the importance of aligning the expectations of the family members and caregivers so we can reap the benefits of homecare for all. In an independent survey conducted by the Department of Empowerment at White Glove, we surveyed patients and families to hear what the most significant qualities are that homecare patients want to find in their nurses. Here is what they said.

Clinical Skill and Experience

Before anything else, patients want their caregivers to be fully aware and okay with the level of intensity and clinical capacity required when working with the patient. It is important to know yourself and be up front with what you can handle. If you know prior to committing to a new assignment that this is something beyond your scope, communicate it with us. Sometimes, we will be able to set up a training or work something out for you to make it work.

Professionalism and Respect

When you have someone working inside your home it can feel like your own space is being exposed. Families appreciate when there is a mutual respect and understanding of privacy and preferences of the house.  For instance, abiding by the unspoken household rules you may not be used to, like yes or no wearing shoes in the home or yes or no eating in the living room. Families also expressed that the way a nurse dresses to work makes a true difference in the atmosphere. Being in neat nursing scrubs brings an air of professionalism.

Warmth and Caring

Every family and patient expressed it in different words, yet this made the most passionate response we got. Our patients need a smile and gentle touch. They cannot always say it, especially those very critically ill bedbound or non-verbal, but their emotions are developed, and they like it when their caregivers communicate with them and talk to them like you speak to another human being. Even more so, they want to feel like you want to be in the home. Some families specified that they truly like it when nurses become like family where they can feel comfortable to truly share their life with you, being the one privy to so much of their pain, disappointment, and progress.

Reliability and Timeliness

Being able to count on a caregiver to always show up and communicate any changes in schedule is dire. With the population we are dealing with, consistence and timeliness at work is as important as the work being done. In the event where a caregiver cannot attend for whatever reason, communicating the notice ahead of time lends the ability to get a temporary caregiver or make other arrangement for the patient for that day or hour.

A Message from White Glove Community Care Patients and Families to White Glove Caregivers:

We thank you all for caring for your patients amid crisis times and every day. The children and adults receiving private duty nursing are generally in a very severe and critical condition and when enabling them to be safe at home it truly gives their quality of life. You cannot imagine the difference when our family members are home versus in a facility setting. They are blossoming. We are filled with gratitude wish to thank you for the hand you have in their story.

You can make a difference too.