Longer Shift Minimums are Impacting In-Home Care

Like many companies, in-home care agencies have changed their practices over the past several years. Many in-home care providers require clients to have three hour or more minimum shift times. This forces individuals to take and pay for time they don’t necessarily need or schedule their needs in one scheduled time slot even though shorter shifts spread across a week would work better for their needs.

This change has occurred for many reasons. Of course, one reason, is to increase revenue. Another reason is to recruit and retain quality employees. Employees prefer to have one or two clients for longer shifts in a day versus going to four or five clients for shorter shifts. Although this may solve some of the employment needs of an in-home provider, it does not address the specific needs of the client.

In-home care generally begins with services to maintain a household such as housekeeping and laundry, transportation to appointments or grocery shopping, nutritional needs with meal preparation, medication reminders, and personal cares such as bathing and transfers. Assistance with some or all of these services are related to declining physical abilities that start gradually which require shorter shift lengths. Those shorter shifts occur at very specific times for medications, mealtimes, and morning or evening routines. By comparison, care services related to cognitive limitations or medical care do typically require longer shifts due to more monitoring and direct hands on care needed.

Tender Hearts Senior Care takes a much different approach. While focused on recruiting and retaining quality employees we find different ways to do that other than creating shifts that work best for our staff such as reimbursing travel time between shifts. Our entire focus is the needs of the client. Being individually owned and operated and not a part of a franchise affords us the flexibility the clients need. We understand a client may need a one hour shift twice a week for bathing. We would never want to force someone to a minimum of three hours for each of those shifts when their need does not dictate that amount. In many of those forced scenarios, clients pass on the services altogether and risk bathing on their own and often are injured in the process. Tender Hearts offers a comprehensive suite of services delivered one hour per week to around the clock care every day of the year. Because we are locally owned and operated, we aren’t bound by the restrictions of larger national franchises with longer shift minimums. When you receive care from Tender Hearts, we treat you as the unique person you are without a “cookie cutter” approach. Our caregivers are matched carefully with our clients and our care planners modify care plans to change with the needs of our clients to help maintain independence at home as long as possible. We truly strive to provide care that comes from the heart.

To learn more about the services that Tender Hearts offers, call 920-459-0791 or visit www.tenderheartseniorcare.net

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