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How to Find in-Home Care for Aging Parents

If you have elderly parents who need assistance, consider in-home help.


  • Step 1: Consult your parents’ physicians Consult with your parents’ physicians. Ask for home health-care suggestions.
  • Step 2: Check internet Check the internet for information on organizations such as AARP, Seniorcorp, and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. Check companies' reputations and business practices with the Better Business Bureau.
  • TIP: Support groups for caregivers offer wonderful opportunities to share information and experiences.
  • Step 3: Determine the status of the caregiver Find out whether potential care providers are from an employment agency, a home care agency or are independent contractors.
  • TIP: Home care agencies screen, train, insure, and supervise their staff.
  • Step 4: Prepare a list of questions Ask the agency or contractor about their history, care provider selection process, background checks, drug testing policy, and monitoring and supervision procedures. Include any other relevant questions.
  • Step 5: Develop an emergency procedure Work with a new provider to develop a standard procedure in case of an emergency.
  • Step 6: Determine payment method Determine how the home care will be paid for. There are many options, and each has it’s own provisions. Potential programs include Medicare and Medicaid, coverage under the Older Americans Act (OAA), Veteran’s Administration (VA) coverage and private insurance.
  • FACT: Did you know? Grandma Moses started painting in her late 70s, and 25 of 1,000 paintings were done after her 100th birthday.

You Will Need

  • Your parents' physician
  • Internet access
  • A list of questions
  • A payment method
  • Support groups (optional)

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