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Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Agencies vs. Independent Caregivers has a page that compares the pros and cons of hiring a caregiver agency versus hiring an independent caregiver.

For both the person doing the hiring and for the caregiver the issues can be complex.

When I worked as an agency caregiver,I appreciated having other caregivers available if I needed to have rest or to change my schedule to go to an appointment. When the agency needed a caregiver for a new client, I would receive a phone call if my personality and skills seemed to match the needs of the client.

If there was an emergency, I notified the agency and they were on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This way there was a team approach.

When I worked as an independent caregiver, I interacted with other caregivers and agencies to set up schedules. When in doubt about eldercare issues I telephoned my attorney for advice.

Sometimes clients wished to hire me as an employee, and sometimes as an independent contractor. I went to a C.P.A. for tax advice and filed quarterlies when working as an independent contractor.

My grandparents, on both sides, had a variety of caregivers, including independent caregivers who were students at the nursing school in their town. The nursing students traded caregiver duties for rent, but paid caregivers came in while the students were in school or working at the hospital.

When my grandfather "Grand-Joe" took trips across the country by plane in later life he traveled with an independent nurse-caregiver. By then he was 92 years old, and having an independent caregiver who could travel for extended periods of time helped him to continue doing what he loved. He was alone after my grandmother died and we were glad he could travel with his independent caregiver for companionship and care.

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