Discover how you can make the most of your care assistant’s home visit in this guest blog post by Chris Williams, founder of Tiggo Care.
Chris Williams is the founder of Tiggo Care, a care agency based in SW London that supports people who need care in their own homes, including people undergoing neurorehabilitation. In this blog post, Chris explains how survivors and their families can make the most of their home care visits.
Care assistants, as trained healthcare professionals, provide support to individuals in various settings, including hospitals, residential care facilities, and the homes of people living in the community. The level of support required by each person varies depending on several factors. However, care assistants bear substantial and wide-ranging responsibilities. These responsibilities encompass tasks ranging from domestic support, such as cleaning, cooking, and shopping, to administrative assistance, medication administration, and attending to basic needs like personal care.
At-home care offers significant benefits to individuals in need of support, as it enables them to maintain their autonomy and stay connected to their community, family, and friends. Additionally, it helps avoid the potentially disruptive impact that transitions to residential care settings can have. Care at home also offers much more flexibility and can vary according to your needs and wishes. Home care visits can be as short as 30 minutes and as long as 24/7 live-in care. Finding the right carer can be a frustrating and stressful process so whatever the duration of your care visits, we want to make this time work for you. This blog will show you how.
Effective support requires careful planning. Therefore, it is crucial for your care team to develop a person-centred care plan before initiating any home care visits. A care plan serves as a dynamic document that outlines your specific care needs and preferences. However, it is important to note that a care plan is only truly effective if it is developed through collaboration with survivors and their close ones. This ensures that the care plan encompasses individual preferences and the needs of individuals, incorporating both input from friends, family, and also health and social care professionals who work with you. Everyone’s care plan is unique but most care plans will include information on:
It’s essential to have a care plan in place because this document works as a guide for your care assistants and ensures that they help you with the right tasks in the right way. It should be as detailed as possible. For example, if you would like your care assistant to make you a cup of tea when they visit it should state if you want milk and sugar. Without a care plan, your care assistant won’t have a clear set of instructions, and it won’t be possible for them to complete as many tasks in the time provided.
One of the key features of neumind is its capacity to connect you with your various healthcare professionals. It is not uncommon to have multiple carers throughout the week, and while continuity of care is essential, changes in caregivers can sometimes be inevitable. Unfortunately, this can become burdensome for survivors, as they find themselves repeatedly explaining their preferences to different individuals. This can lead to frustration and, more significantly, hinder the establishment of trusting and supportive relationships, which are crucial for personalised care.
However, the neumind app addresses this issue by facilitating communication between you and all your carers. Through the app, you can convey any specific needs you may have, such as shopping requests or desired activities like going to the cinema. We recommend creating a checklist of items and purchasing them in advance. If this is not possible, you can share your list with your care assistant using the neumind mobile app, and they can take care of the shopping at the beginning of the visit. For those receiving regular care visits, the list can be updated at the end of each visit with the assistance of your care assistant. Setting a reminder in the neumind mobile app can help ensure that you don't forget to share this with your care assistant.
Although the care plan is great for ensuring your care assistant completes routine activities, it is inevitable that you will want support with one-off tasks, such as taking some clothes to the dry cleaner prior to a special event. It’s important to also make a list of these irregular tasks before the visit takes place and to share them with your care assistant as soon as they arrive. Again, you can make this list and set a reminder to share this list with your care assistant in the neumind mobile app.
When your care assistant arrives for the first time, they will want to talk with you and get to know you. Establishing a rapport with anyone can be difficult but at Tiggo Care, we specialise in matching personalities as well as matching care assistants with the right skill sets to support you. We recognise that this relationship is foundational to care, so if you don’t feel comfortable with your care assistant, you can request someone new, no questions asked. A good care company understands that not all personalities are complementary.
At the start of the visit, communicate any immediate needs with your care assistant and share with them any lists that you’ve prepared in advance. Your care assistant will use this information in conjunction with the care plan to determine how they should prioritise their time. Be decisive when communicating your immediate needs so the care assistant understands which tasks are important to you during that particular care visit. Make sure to also listen to the care assistant’s suggestions. They might have noticed something that you’ve forgotten, such as an overflowing laundry basket.
While plans are important, they can only help structure your time. It will be up to your carer and you to make the most of it.
Individuals undergoing rehabilitation for brain injuries and other conditions experience significant changes, making it crucial to maintain accurate records of the support provided during each visit. While some care companies rely on physical notes stored in your home, others utilise mobile apps. The neumind mobile app offers real-time updates on your care and serves as a convenient platform for tracking your satisfaction. This allows us to best adapt to your changing preferences and needs but also helps us maintain the best care for you. For example, should you develop a strong rapport with one of our care assistants, you can share this information with Tiggo Care and request more visits from your preferred caregivers.
Maintaining independence is vital for successful rehabilitation, making at-home care the optimal model for meeting the ongoing needs of individuals living with brain injuries. At Tiggo Care, we use innovative tools for matching carers with service users and utilise cutting-edge technology to adapt to your changing needs. The success of care assistants always hinges upon the establishment of mutually supportive and trusting relationships.
Our service, coupled with tools like neumind, overcomes many of the challenges that previously made at-home care difficult. These industry-defining advancements have the potential to transform the nature of care as we know it.
Myself and the entire Tiggo Care team are ready to support you and your loved ones. For more information about the services Tiggo Care provides or to further discuss the specificities of home care visits, feel free to visit the Tiggo Care website