Caring for your clients – supporting the families – know your role

Being home care worker can be fulfilling yet frustrating as you work very closely with clients and families. You nee dot know your role for the best quality care for your client.

If you are a home care support worker you will not only be looking after your clients but their famiiles as well. This job has pro’s and cons and can be fulfilling yet frustrating.

Situations occur where you want to say something- especially if you are an experienced home care worker. yet other times it may be best to keep quiet. You can only learn the difference with experience by building a relationships.

A recent example was a client’s daughter who explained a new living arrangement for her mum. It was three days in her own home, 2 days in a residential home and 2 days at her daughter in- laws home – every week to see if this would work.

It is obvious to the support worker that living in three different homes in one week would be very unsettling for the client. The client has dementia and is prone to wandering so even more reason to have a stable home environment.

Should the care worker say something? Yes, especially if they have a good trusting relationship with the family. The support worker could suggest a few options.

  • That alarms be set up so alerts that go to the daughters mobile phone so she knows when mum is outside the home.
  • Alarms put on the main door.
  • More respite care could be put into place so the client is supervised more.

Sounds easy to make these suggestions but its not. Many families do not research many options or are not aware that technology exisits. They are looking for solutions thst can solve an immediate problem. They may be overwhelmed with many sleepless nights, guilt and the burden of keeping their loved one safe. This means that they can’t see the options in front of them.

They may not hear your suggestions or dismiss them. Thats when it gets frustratiing but you must back-off. They are the primary caregivers dealing 24/7with caregiver stress. You are a careworker who is there a for a few hours a week. You must know your professionla boundaries and be respectful.

If you are in similar situation as above, where you can see extra solutions, you should suggest them … gently.

Another place to send caregivers for support is Carers NSW or Carers Qld.