Encouraging Safe Home Care Visits

When you or your loved ones are sick, it is important to take all of the appropriate precautions.

By now, you have it down to a routine: you wash your hands often, keep your house clean, practice social distancing, and wear a mask when you go out.

However, sometimes that isn’t enough, and you want to take the next step in caring for your or your loved one’s medical needs by enlisting the help of a home care provider. You may be anxious to maintain a level of safety that befits today’s challenges, but we are here to help.

What are some of the things you can do to ensure that your home remains a safe, COVID-19-free place? The AARP recently released some ideas for how to prepare for home care during these difficult times, and we have a few key points to share here:

  • Encourage your home care provider to self-monitor. Most home care agencies require this, but you should feel free to ask that your home care provider has monitored their own temperature each day, and continues to monitor for any suspicious symptoms (such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath).
  • Encourage your home care provider to screen you and your loved one. They should regularly check temperatures, and ask about potential symptoms. Be open and honest with your home care provider. If you fear that you have been exposed, or if you don’t feel well, they need to know.
  • Your home care provider should be wearing appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) like masks. Masks and gloves are important to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
  • Opt for video calls and phone check-ins with doctors, when possible. There are many tools available to provide healthcare from a distance. Many doctors are now seeing patients through Telehealth platforms, reducing the need for in-person visits and potential exposure to COVID-19.
  • Make sure medications and medical supplies are refilled and at the ready. Work with your home care provider to ensure that you or your loved one have enough supplies to get through should stores and pharmacies be closed for an extended period of time. Affirmed Home Care recommends stocking up on one to three months of medication.
  • Keep yourself well.
  • Wash your hands frequently with water for at least 20 seconds before and after providing care
  • Avoid crowds
  • Cough or sneeze into the bend of your elbow or into a tissue
  • Keep your hands away from your face
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces in your home often, especially surfaces used by your loved one, such as canes, walkers, and handrails

Our hope is that with increased diligence, you can keep you, your loved ones, your home care provider, and your home, safe and COVID-19 free!