Category Archives: Family Caregiver Information and Resources Posts

Our Blog posts with information and tips for family caregivers for elders, those with Alzheimer’s and dementia, and recovering from surgery or illness.

 

EPA-Approved Products Proven To Kill The COVID-19 Virus

The CDC states that the primary and most important mode of transmission for COVID-19 is through close contact from person-to-person. Based on data from lab studies on COVID-19 and what is know about similar respiratory diseases, it may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this isn’t thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Best practices to minimize the possibility of transmission is to sanitized all surfaces, especially frequently touched surfaces as often with a sanitizer that kills the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has added to its list of products that have proven effective in killing the new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) on hard surfaces, based on results from laboratory testing. This update brings the total number of products approved by the EPA for use against SARS-CoV-2 virus to 23 products:

1. Lysol Disinfectant Spray
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium, ethanol (ethyl alcohol)
EPA registration number: 777-99

2. Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium, ethanol (ethyl alcohol)
EPA registration number: 777-127

3. Lysol Disinfecting Wipes (all scents)
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 777-114

4. Lysol Laundry Sanitizer
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 777-128

5. Lonza Formulation R-82
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-78

6. Lonza Formulation S-21
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-75

7. Lonzagard RCS-256 Plus
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-349

8. Lonzagard RCS-128 PLUS
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-348

9. Lonzagard RCS-128
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-347

10. Lonzagard RCS-256
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-346

11. Lonza Formulation R-82F
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-139

12. Lonzagard R-82G
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-381

13. Lonza Formulation S-18
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-77

14. Lonza Formulation DC-103
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-152

15. Lonza Formulation S-21F
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-140

16. Lonza Formulation S-18F
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-136

17. Lonza Disinfectant Wipes
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-313

18. Lonza Nugen Low Streak Disinfectant Wipes
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-382

19. Lonza Disinfectant Wipes Plus
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-336

20. Lonza Disinfectant Wipes Plus 2
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 6836-340

21. Clorox Commercial Solutions Clorox Disinfecting Wipes
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 67619-31

22. Clorox Disinfecting Wipes
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 5813-79

23. CDW (from The Clorox Company)
Active ingredients: Quaternary ammonium
EPA registration number: 5813-113

It is also important to wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer correctly when soap and water are not available.

For a PDF version please click here.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides private in-home care for elders, those with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We provide both short-term and long-term in-home care needs from as little as one 4 hour day a week to 24 Hour Care and Live-In Care.

We offer a full range of in-home personal care services including Bathing, Personal Hygiene and Grooming, Dressing Assistance, Toileting and Incontinence, Feeding, and Medication Reminders.

We also provide support services such as Case Management, Accompaniment to Appointments, Nutrition and Meal Management, Light Housekeeping and Laundry Services, Bed and Wheel Chair Transfers, and Shopping and Running Errands.

Unique HomeCare Services is headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts and serves the surrounding communities.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs and get a quote, please call us to speak to a Case Manager at (800) 296-9962 or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

Nursing Homes, Assisted Living and COVID-19

More than 43,000 long-term care residents and staff have died from COVID-19, representing over a third of the nation’s known coronavirus deaths.

Over 50% of family members are now more likely to choose in-home care for their loved ones than they were prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a recent survey by Transcend Strategy Group.

Why Are Nursing Homes So Vulnerable To COVID-19?

• People age 65 and older are at higher risk from COVID-19.

• People with chronic medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease and respiratory illness are also at higher risk from COVID-19.

The nation’s 1.3 million nursing home and assisted living residents generally fit both risk groups.

Certain conditions at nursing homes also aid the spread of the disease:

• Frequent close physical contact between residents and staff.

• Understaffing.

• Employees that work in multiple long-term care facilities, increasing chances of spread from one facility to the next.

• Shared resident rooms cause close physical contact.

• The transfers of new residents from hospitals and other settings.

These factors made nursing homes breeding grounds for viral and bacterial diseases prior to the COVID 19 pandemic:

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), states that over 4 million Americans are admitted to or reside in nursing homes and skilled nursing facilities each year and nearly 1 million persons reside in assisted living facilities. Data on infections in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) is limited, but it is estimated that 1 to 3 million serious infections occur every year in these facilities.

These infections include urinary tract infection, diarrheal diseases, antibiotic-resistant staph infections and many others.

Infections are a major cause of hospitalization and death with as many as 380,000 people die of these infections in LTCFs every year.

Nursing Home Staff should:

• Wear personal protective equipment, such as face masks and gloves.

• Wash their hands or use hand sanitizer before and after contact with each resident, after using medical equipment, and after taking off masks, gowns, and/or gloves.

• Place alcohol-based hand sanitizer in all resident-care areas, including inside and outside resident’s rooms.

• Practice cough etiquette/hygiene.

• Stay home when sick.

• Clean residents’ hands after toileting or eating.

• Clean and disinfect medical equipment between each use.

How nursing home residents and their families can reduce the spread of COVID-19:

Wash their hands or use hand sanitizer and remind other residents to do the same.

• Practice social distancing from other residents whenever possible.

• Inform the administration if they observe staff who appear to be sick or are not taking the steps listed above to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

• Request that the administration provides regular updates to residents about what the facility is doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and care for any residents who are ill.

• That the administration shares the results of the facility’s self-assessment of their infection control practices.

• Ask facility staff to schedule a regular time for residents to communicate with their family and to assist them if they need help.

If you have concerns about the facility’s infection control practices or other issues:

• You can still use the facility’s grievance process if they have any complaints or concerns.

• Talk to the director of nursing or administrator about your concerns and ask what they will do to address them.

• Contact the Long-Term Care Ombudsman program for assistance. The Ombudsman program advocates for residents and can help resolve concerns.

• File a complaint with your state survey agency.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides private in-home care for elders, those with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We provide both short-term and long-term in-home care needs from as little as one 4 hour day a week to 24 Hour Care and Live-In Care.

We offer a full range of in-home personal care services including Bathing, Personal Hygiene and Grooming, Dressing Assistance, Toileting and Incontinence, Feeding, and Medication Reminders.

We also provide support services such as Case Management, Accompaniment to Appointments, Nutrition and Meal Management, Light Housekeeping and Laundry Services, Bed and Wheel Chair Transfers, and Shopping and Running Errands.

Unique HomeCare Services is headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts and serves the surrounding communities.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs and get a quote, please call us to speak to a Case Manager at (800) 296-9962 or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

Pros and Cons of Aging In Place

“Aging in Place” describes the desire to live in your own home in later life, for as long as you are able.

Remaining in your own home may involve social support, in-home care services and adapting the home to help you live safely and independently.

AARP reports that nearly 90% of seniors want to stay in their own homes as they age.

Over 50% of family members are now more likely to choose in-home care for their loved ones than they were prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a recent survey by Transcend Strategy Group.

Advantages of Aging in Place:

• Maintains the familiar home environment and avoids the stress and anxiety of moving into a long-term care facility.

• Fosters the continuity of community for the senior.

• Keeps the senior’s valuable social networks intact.

• Provides cost savings over other long-term care options.

• Strengthens the family.

• Promotes greater senior physical and mental health.

Disadvantages of Aging in Place:

• Low, moderate, or high investment in home modifications dependent on the need and the home situation.

• Senior resistance to any home modifications and helpful technology.

For more information on go to our Directory of Aging in Place Resources.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides private in-home care for elders, those with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We provide both short-term and long-term in-home care needs from as little as one 4 hour day a week to 24 Hour Care and Live-In Care.

We offer a full range of in-home personal care services including Bathing, Personal Hygiene and Grooming, Dressing Assistance, Toileting and Incontinence, Feeding, and Medication Reminders.

We also provide support services such as Case Management, Accompaniment to Appointments, Nutrition and Meal Management, Light Housekeeping and Laundry Services, Bed and Wheel Chair Transfers, and Shopping and Running Errands.

Unique HomeCare Services is headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts and serves the surrounding communities.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs and get a quote, please call us to speak to a Case Manager at (800) 296-9962 or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

When And How to Use Hand Sanitizer Correctly

Most people do not use hand sanitizer correctly, which increasing the chance of spread COVID-19 and other germs.

The CDC recommends washing hands with soap and water whenever possible because hand washing reduces the amounts of all types of germs and chemicals on hands.

Using Hand Sanitizer CorrectlyIf soap and water are not available, using a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can help you avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others.

Hand sanitizers can quickly reduce the number of microbes on hands in some situations, but sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs.

Background

Even if your hands appear to be clean, they carry germs. Hands pick up micro-organisms (germs) in a number of ways:

• When people who are sick sneeze or cough, the germs that are making them sick are expelled into the air in tiny droplets. If these droplets get onto your hands and then you touch your mouth, eyes or nose without washing away these germs, you can get sick.

• You can also get sick if you don’t wash your hands or sanitize them before and after preparing food and after using the toilet.

• Washing your hands or sanitizing not only prevents you from getting sick, but it also reduces the risk of infecting others.

• Other people can also get sick from the germs unwashed hands leave on objects and surfaces such as doorknobs, keyboards, and other equipment in the home or workplace.

Alcohol-based hand sanitizers can quickly reduce the number of microbes on hands in some situations, but sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs.

• Soap and water are more effective than hand sanitizers at removing certain kinds of germs.

• Although alcohol-based hand sanitizers can inactivate many types of microbes very effectively when used correctly, people may not use a large enough volume of the sanitizers or may wipe it off before it has dried.

Hand sanitizers may not be as effective when hands are visibly dirty or greasy.

• Studies show that hand sanitizers work well in clinical settings like hospitals, where hands come into contact with germs but generally are not heavily soiled or greasy. However, when hands are heavily soiled or greasy, hand sanitizers may not work well. Handwashing with soap and water is recommended in such circumstances.

Hand sanitizers might not remove harmful chemicals from hands.

• Hand sanitizers cannot remove or inactivate harmful chemicals. If hands have touched harmful chemicals, wash carefully with soap and water.

If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

• Sanitizers with an alcohol concentration between 60–95% are more effective at killing germs than those with a lower alcohol concentration or non-alcohol-based hand sanitizers.

• Hand sanitizers without 60-95% alcohol may merely reduce the growth of germs rather than kill them outright.

When using hand sanitizer, apply the product to the palm of one hand and rub the product all over the surfaces of your hands until your hands are dry.

• Make sure your hands are dry before using hand sanitizer as wet hands will dilute the product.

• Use enough product to cover all the surfaces of your hands and fingers.

• Rub the hand sanitizer over the front and back of hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.

• Rub your hands together until the product has evaporated. Do not wipe off the hand sanitizer as it needs to dry on the hands to be effective.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides private in-home care for elders, those with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We provide both short-term and long-term in-home care needs from as little as one 4 hour day a week to 24 Hour Care and Live-In Care.

We offer a full range of in-home personal care services including Bathing, Personal Hygiene and Grooming, Dressing Assistance, Toileting and Incontinence, Feeding, and Medication Reminders.

We also provide support services such as Case Management, Accompaniment to Appointments, Nutrition and Meal Management, Light Housekeeping and Laundry Services, Bed and Wheel Chair Transfers, and Shopping and Running Errands.

Unique HomeCare Services is headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts and serves the surrounding communities.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs and get a quote, please call us to speak to a Case Manager at (800) 296-9962 or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

Organizing Your Elderly Parent’s Information

You may be noticing the signs that your elderly parents need help.

Think about all the questions and information you would need if your parents suddenly passed or became incapacitated.

Your Elderly Parents

• Are your parents neat and organized with a filing system so you can find everything?

• Do you know where to to begin looking for the information you need?

• Are your parents secretive?

• Do your parents have jewelry, money, or other valuables hidden in the house?

• Do they have a Safe Deposit Box?

You need to get answers to your questions long before a potential crisis happens and help your parents organize their documents and information.

Get Access and Contact Information

You or the person holding Durable Power of Attorney will need access to computer accounts and financial records. Start by asking these questions:

• What is their computer login?

• Do they bank, pay bills or handle investments online? If so, what are the accounts and passwords?

• Where are copies of their federal and state income tax filings for the last three years?

• Do they have an accountant? What is the accountant’s contact information?

• Do they own life insurance? Where are the policies?

• Where are their homeowner’s and car insurance policies?

• Where are their health insurance policies? Also make copies of the front and back of their health insurance cards.

• Who handles their investments? What is their investment advisers contact information?

• Do they have bonds or stock certificates in the house?

• If they own property, do they have a mortgage, equity loan or reverse mortgage?

• Where are any real estate deeds and property tax information?

• If they own a vehicle, boat or land, where are the titles or deeds and registration?

• Do they have any bank loans?

• Have they given or taken any personal loans? To and from whom? How much is owed?

• Do they have credit card debt? Also make copies of the front and back of any card cards.

• Do they make regular payments to any person, business or organization?

• Do they have a pension?

• With which banks do they have accounts for checking, savings and CD’s? You will need the names of the institutions and account numbers, and PINs numbers for their ATM cards.

• Are membership dues, subscriptions, donations or purchases subtracted directly from their bank account?

• Have they been a customer of other banks or brokerages in the past?

• Do they have a Will and where is it?

• Do they have a Durable Power of Attorney for health care?

• Do they have an attorney? Is the attorney holding their will or other important documents?

• Are any assets in a trust?

• Do they have a safety deposit box? Where are the keys, locations, and any other information needed for access?

• Do they have a burial plot and any prepaid funeral plans?

• Where are their Social Security cards, passport’s? Also make copies of their driver licenses.

• Where are other important documents such as education and military records, marriage license, and
divorce decrees?

• Are there any hiding places in the house, yard, garage or car for money and valuables?

• Where are any valuables such as jewelry and artwork?

Create Contact Lists

Make up contact lists of all important people and institutions you may need to reach:

• Contact information of friends and clergy.

• Contact information for health care: doctors, dentists, chiropractors, and pharmacies.

• Contact list of attorneys, investment advisors, accountants, etc.

Sort And Store Documents

Everyone has their own approach to organizing. For some a filing box maybe better and for other’s a notebook and a 3 hole punch.

• First sort the documents into like kind piles by category.

• With everything divvied up by category, put each stack in chronological order with newest on top.

• Label dividers or files folders, one for each category that applies.

• Punch holes on the left side of each record if using a binder. Put in chronological order in the appropriate section.

Each of these should be in separate folder or section:

Pension Statements — Contact information: the firm handling distribution, the person in charge of account, and job or union where pension was earned.

401(k)/ IRA Retirement Accounts — Contact information: brokers, financial institutiosn and financial adviser’s names, firms, and phone numbers.

Insurance Policies — Long-term care, health, home, vehicle, and life policies. Contact information: agents, policy numbers, phone numbers.

Credit Card Statements — Contact information for lost or stolen card hotline and account numbers.

Social Security or Disability — Records of direct deposit or checks received.

Bank Account Statements — Contact information: local branch banker, account numbers.

Bills — Including account numbers for utilities, cable, department store and credit cards. Contact and other information: amount and due date for state and local property tax, with number for tax adviser, and the phone number, email address and address of the property tax bureau to which they are paid. Make note of any payments automatically withdrawn from a checking account or charged to a credit card, such as memberships, subscriptions and charity donations.

Warrantees — File unexpired important warrantees for items such as: appliances, windows, roof, kitchen cabinets, sprinkler system, security cameras, electronics, medical equipment, stair climber.

Legal Documents — The location of Wills or trusts, information on any ongoing lawsuits or settlements, attorney fees paid and due. Contact information for attorney names, firms, phone number and emails.

Loans — Payment books and statements. Contact information: customer service numbers, loan numbers, account passwords if they are paid online.

Mortgage — Statements, updates such as the sale of the mortgage, monthly due date, balloon payment due date, payoff date. Contact information: customer service number and account numbers.

Personal Loans — Signed agreements and payments made. Contact information: names and phone numbers.

Keeping Track Of And Money And Receipts

On a large manila envelope write: Care recipient’s name, the year and “Tax Deductible.”

• Put the current year’s medical receipts that your loved one, or you, if the person is a dependent, can deduct from taxes. Record tax-deductible miles driven, tolls and parking fees in a digital or paper calendar or datebook.

Check For Lost Money

Some $43 billion in lost money is sitting in banks and state accounts waiting for the rightful owner to claim it. These funds may be an unclaimed paychecks, abandoned bank and investment account, a tax or other refunds, an inheritance, an unclaimed prizes.

The name of the bank of institution may be unfamiliar as many banks have been bought and merged.

To see if your loved one is among those due, go to MissingMoney.com

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides in-home care for elders, those with Alzheimer’s or dementia, and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We offer a full range of in-home care services such as personal care, grooming and incontinence care, bathing and dressing, post-hospitalization care, Alzheimer’s and Dementia care, and medication management.

We also provide non-medical support services such as meal planning and preparation, light housekeeping, caring companionship, shopping/errands, accompanying to medical and other appointments, as well as case management services.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

Our service area is Boston, Norwood, Dedham, Westwood, Walpole, Canton, Sharon, Stoughton, Avon, Braintree, Easton, Milton, Quincy, Weymouth, and surrounding towns.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation full In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs of you or your loved one please call us at (800) 296-9962 to speak to a Case Manager or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

24 Hour and Live-In Home Care for Alzheimer’s and Dementia

Most elderly, including those with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, prefer to age in their homes.

The flexibility of in-home care allows for services to easily be increased or decrease depending on the need versus the relatively fixed costs of an assisted living facility, a memory care unit, or a nursing home facility.

Those in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias might require only minimal personal care assistance and live-in or 24 hour care is not required.

As people enter mid stage dementia the hours of care and services can be increased to assist with the greater need with the Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), such as bathing, personal hygiene, and dressing, and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs), such as light housecleaning, laundry, and shopping for groceries.

In late-stage and end-stage dementia and Alzheimer’s, persons need extensive help, as mobility and the ability to communicate can be lost altogether.

Additional caregivers services might be needed such as companionship, meal preparation and clean up, and accompaniment to appointments.

The around the clock care that 24 Hour care provides or the all day care that Live-in care provides might be required.

It can be easy to confuse Live-in care with 24 hour care. While the same services are generally provided with both types of care, there are differences in coverage and costs between them.

With Live-In home care, a single caregiver provides to the needs of your loved one in a 24 hour time frame. The caregiver is scheduled for a maximum of four or five days per week and then switches with a different caregiver for the remainder of the week. Generally, the care is given by only these two caregivers over the course of the week, versus the day.

Over a 24 hour day, the Live-in caregiver is given a 4 hour break to rest and rejuvenate. If the situation requires it, an additional caregiver can cover these 4 hours. The Live-in caregiver also has an 8 hour sleeping period.

With Live-in care, a room and a bed in the house must be provided for the Live-in caregiver to sleep.

Live-in care is billed at a flat per day rate. If needed, any additional coverage during the Live-in caregiver’s 4 hour daily break is billed at an hourly rate.

With 24 Hour care, two caregivers are scheduled daily with each caregiver working a 12 hour shift. In some situations for medical or other reasons, it is better to have three caregivers who each work an 8 hour shift.

Caregivers do not sleep in the home and a room is not provided for them with 24 Hour care.

24 Hour home care is billed on an hourly rate and caregivers usually work no more than 4 shifts per week.

Live-in and 24 Hour care costs are comparable to nursing home and assisted living costs, and provides individual one-on-one care versus shared care.

Live-in home care costs are less than the cost of nursing homes at around $384 a day for the care needs of one person or $504 a day for two people to receive care.

24 Hour in-home care is about $576 a day for the care needs of one person or $624 a day for two people to receive care.

Nursing homes in Greater Boston average about $10,380 a month and range between $7,050 and $13,200 per month.

Annually, the costs of these facilities are $84,600 to $158,400 with the mean cost of around $126,290 for Greater Boston, which is higher than the national mean average of $77,380 a year.

Our caregivers are trained and experienced in Alzheimer’s and dementia care They know how to approach and communicate with persons with dementia. Including how to handle specific behaviors commonly seen in persons with the disease, such as sundowning, wandering, and mood swings.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides private in-home care for elders, those with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We provide both short-term and long-term in-home care needs from as little as one 4 hour day a week to 24 Hour Care and Live-In Care.

We offer a full range of in-home personal care services including Bathing, Personal Hygiene, Dressing Assistance, Toileting and Incontinence, Feeding, and Medication Reminders.

We also provide support services such as Case Management, Accompaniment to Appointments, Nutrition and Meal Management, Light Housekeeping and Laundry Services, Bed and Wheel Chair Transfers, and Shopping and Running Errands.

Unique HomeCare Services is headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts and serves the surrounding communities.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs and get a quote, please call us to speak to a Case Manager at (800) 296-9962 or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

Massachusetts Home Care Program Allows Family Members To Provide Care And Get Paid

A number of our clients have served as care providers for their loved ones. Some have even been paid to be their parent’s caregiver.

In Massachusetts, there are several programs which will pay family members for caring for their elderly or disabled relatives in their homes. So yes, family members can be paid to provide care, but only under certain conditions.

elderly woman family caregiver

Massachusetts Home Care Programs

The Massachusetts Home Care Program is a state-sponsored program administered through regional Aging Services Access Points (ASAPs).

In Massachusetts, there are 26 Aging Services Access Points. The ASAP’s role is to provide home-based services such as case management and to seniors so that they can continue to live independently in their home.

An Aging Services Access Point (ASAP) Assessment Is Needed

To receive payment for your services you will first need to have the senior undergo an assessment for their care needs. The ASAP’s designate certain agencies to conduct the assessment in your area. Click here for more information or to locate an ASAP near where you live.

The ASAP will send a team to your home to assess the need for services and help you and your family develop a service plan. The criteria for an objective assessment of activities of daily living were created by the Commonwealth’s Executive Office of Elder Affairs. Depending on your family’s income, you may have to pay a monthly co-payment, which is based on a sliding scale.

Program benefit levels can change based on the state budget. Therefore check with your local ASAP for current benefits.

Eligibility for Home Care Services

To be eligible, the person receiving care must be 60 years old or older. However, applicants under age 60 years old may qualify if they have a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or other types of Dementia.

The service recipient must meet specific income eligibility guidelines.

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts sets the maximum income for the Home Care Program for 2018 at $27,636 for individuals and $39,104 for couples.

Over Income Program

Individuals or couples whose income is higher than the income maximum may be eligible for the Over Income Program in which they would make co-payments based on a sliding scale percentage.

The service recipient must need assistance with at least six Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s) including:

• Eating
• Toileting
• Dressing
• Bathing
• Transportation
• Grocery Shopping
• Transferring
• Laundry
• Housework
• Medication Management
• Meal Preparation
• Money Management

At least one of the areas requiring assistance must be a “critical unmet need”. Critical unmet needs can be defined as personal care, grocery shopping, medication management, meal preparation (or a need for home-delivered meals), and transportation for respite or medical treatment.

Experienced ASAP case managers will check out the service recipient’s abilities for activities of daily living by completing an in-home assessment. Based on this assessment a service plan may provide approximately 2.5 hours per week of services.

Within the Home Care Program, there may be additional levels of support and services for those eligible, including the Enhanced Community Options Program (ECOP), Frail Elder Waiver (FEW) and Consumer Directed Care (CDC).

For details about getting paid for providing care or any of the programs above – call 1-800-AGE-INFO (1-800-243-4636).

If You Do Not Want To Do It All Yourself And Need Help, We Can Be Of Assistance!

We understand that family members and seniors sometimes decide after careful consideration that a do-it-yourself approach is not always the best solution for all. We can offer our services to you during a time of planning for these needs or during a crisis when you need in-home care services.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides in-home care for elders and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We offer a full range of in-home care services such as personal care, grooming and incontinence care, bathing and dressing, post-hospitalization care, Alzheimer’s and Dementia care, and medication management.

We also provide non-medical support services such as meal planning and preparation, light housekeeping, caring companionship, shopping/errands, accompanying to medical and other appointments, as well as case management services.

Our services are available for long-term and short-term care needs from as little as a one 4 hour day visit a week to 24 Hour and Live-In Care.

We also offer Respite Care services to assist family caregivers going away or with caregiver fatigue.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

Our service area is Boston, Norwood, Dedham, Westwood, Walpole, Canton, Sharon, Stoughton, Avon, Braintree, Easton, Milton, Quincy, Weymouth, and surrounding towns.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation full In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs of you or your loved one please call us at (800) 296-9962 to speak to a Case Manager or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

Finding The Best Home Care Agency

The best home care agencies provide services that sets them apart from other home care agencies. This is a list of best practices and qualities that professional agencies exemplify on a daily basis that set them apart.

Unique HomeCare Services

Staff Screening

Thorough screening of staff is essential to protecting your loved ones. The best agencies will screen staff with background checks and a thorough check of all work and personal references. This ensures that each employee has impeccable references and a history of reliability and treating people with dignity and respect. Candidates also undergo a thorough interview process to make sure that each employee has the requisite skills, education, and attitude necessary to provide the most competent, compassionate, and caring services available.

Staff Experience

The best home care agencies recruit staff with the most experience providing home care services. They make sure their staff had the proper credentials and the programs they graduated from are accredited programs. They also take the time to work with the staff in the home, for a period of time, to make sure that they deliver the services in a competent, and caring way, and to make sure that the patient feels comfortable with the care provider.

Flexibility

The best home care agency recruit staff that can be flexible with their hours. Thus, when a client requires additional care, the staff can accommodate their increased need. The agency also needs sufficient backup staff that can meet any increased care needs including nights and weekend.

They Care

The best home care agencies recruit the type of caregiver that they would want to care for their own parents. They look for staff with a positive, cooperative attitude. The correct attitude and values need come from the top down in the company. They understand that caring for someone means treating them as a human being first and is of the utmost importance. They understand that respecting people shows that you care.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides in-home care for elders and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We offer a full range of in-home care services such as personal care, grooming and incontinence care, bathing and dressing, post-hospitalization care, Alzheimer’s and Dementia care, and medication management.

We also provide non-medical support services such as meal planning and preparation, light housekeeping, caring companionship, shopping/errands, accompanying to medical and other appointments, as well as case management services.

Our services are available for long-term and short-term care needs from as little as a one 4 hour day visit a week to 24 Hour and Live-In Care.

We also offer Respite Care services to assist family caregivers going away or with caregiver fatigue.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

Our service area is Boston, Norwood, Dedham, Westwood, Walpole, Canton, Sharon, Stoughton, Avon, Braintree, Easton, Milton, Quincy, Weymouth, and surrounding towns.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation full In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs of you or your loved one please call us at (800) 296-9962 to speak to a Case Manager or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

Options When 24 Hour Care Is Needed

The advantages of 24 hour in-home care or Live-in home care over an assisted living facility or nursing home are lower costs, one-on-one-care versus shared care, and the ability of the person to stay in their home.

24 HOUR CARE

24 Hour Care

Typically 24 hour care is given by two caregivers who are scheduled daily and each working one 12 hour shift. In many cases, it makes more sense for medical or other reasons if there are 3 caregivers who each work an 8-hour shift.

These shifts do not involve a caregiver sleeping in the home to provide care. With 12 hour shifts, the caregivers usually work no more than 4 times per week.

24 hour care is billed at an hourly rate.

Advantages of 24 Hour Care

With 24 hour care, a caregiver will be with your loved one at all times, day or night.

The caregivers are awake all night and day to ensure that your loved one has someone there to give care 24 hours a day.

Many people prefer this option, especially if your loved one has a condition in which they wander or need care at all hours of the day or night.  24 hour care allows caregivers to be more alert because they are replaced with another fresh caregiver every 8 or 12 hours.

Disadvantages of 24 Hour Care

The disadvantage of 24 hour care is the higher cost versus Live-in care, as 24 hour care is billed at an hourly versus a flat rate with Live-in rate. Live-in care is about half the cost of 24 hour care.

Additionally, 24 hour care has less continuity of caregivers, making this less desirable where the client wants or needs the same person providing all the care.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides private in-home care for elders, those with Alzheimer’s or Dementia, and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We provide both short-term and long-term in-home care needs from as little as one 4 hour day a week to 24 Hour Care and Live-In Care.

We offer a full range of in-home personal care services including Bathing, Personal Hygiene, Dressing Assistance, Toileting and Incontinence, Feeding, and Medication Reminders.

We also provide support services such as Case Management, Accompaniment to Appointments, Nutrition and Meal Management, Light Housekeeping and Laundry Services, Bed and Wheel Chair Transfers, and Shopping and Running Errands.

Our service area is Boston, Norwood, Dedham, Westwood, Walpole, Canton, Sharon, Stoughton, Avon, Braintree, Easton, Milton, Quincy, Weymouth, and surrounding towns.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs and get a quote, please call us to speak to a Case Manager at (800) 296-9962 or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.

 

Options When Live-In Care Is Needed

Advantages of in-home live-in care or 24 hour home care over an assisted living facility or nursing home is are lower costs and the ability of the individual to stay in their home.

LIVE IN CARE

Live-In Care

Live-In care involves a single caregiver providing care to the client in a 24 hour time frame. Typically, the caregiver is scheduled for a maximum of four or five days per week. For the remainder of the days of the week, a different caregiver attends to the client.

In a 24 hour period, it is customary for a 4 hour break to be given to the Live-in caregiver. One must decide if they would like to provide additional home healthcare coverage for these 4 hours.

The caregiver for the Live in shift is provided with an 8 hour sleeping break and a bed must be provided for the caregiver.

Billing for Live in caregivers is done at a flat rate per day.  Coverage for the 4 hour break if needed is paid on an hourly rate.

Advantages of Live-In Care

Live-in caregiver rates are half the cost of 24 hour care.

With Live-in care the number of caregivers is reduced. Ideally, two caregivers are scheduled for the whole week coverage. This provides the client with the consistency of care and gives the senior, disabled, or post hospitalized person an opportunity to get to know and build a relationship with their two caregivers.

Disadvantages of Live-In Care

One disadvantage of using Live-in care is that there is a 4 hour break given to the daytime caregiver. You have to decide if care during the break period is needed and if so, who provides this care, a family or another caregiver. If care is provided during the break, there is an additional hourly cost on top of the flat live-in rate.

As the caregiver is given a mandatory 8 hour sleeping break, there is no direct care or supervision during this 8 hour time frame.

How To Decide Which Type Of Care Is Better

To determine which option, Live-in care or 24 hour care is needed, we suggest you have an In-Home Assessment. Then together we can help you determine the best type of care for you or your loved one.

We also recommend getting the input of your medical care team so that you can make an informed decision that takes into account your medical, emotional, and financial considerations.

About Unique HomeCare Services

Unique HomeCare Services provides in-home care for elders and people who are recuperating from illness, injury, or surgery.

We offer a full range of in-home care services such as personal care, grooming and incontinence care, bathing and dressing, post-hospitalization care, Alzheimer’s and Dementia care, and medication management.

We also provide non-medical support services such as meal planning and preparation, light housekeeping, caring companionship, shopping/errands, accompanying to medical and other appointments, as well as case management services.

Our services are available for long-term and short-term care needs from as little as a one 4 hour day visit a week to 24 Hour and Live-In Care.

We also offer Respite Care services to assist family caregivers going away or with caregiver fatigue.

It is our pleasure to assist our veteran clients with VA Aid and Attendance Benefit approval at no cost.

We have an extensive Directory of Online Senior and Caregiver Resources for the information you need.

Our service area is Boston, Norwood, Dedham, Westwood, Walpole, Canton, Sharon, Stoughton, Avon, Braintree, Easton, Milton, Quincy, Weymouth, and surrounding towns.

To schedule a no cost and no obligation full In-Home Assessment to determine the home care needs of you or your loved one please call us at (800) 296-9962 to speak to a Case Manager or fill out our Free Quote Contact Form.