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Finding Great Carers

Australia is leading the world in giving care recipients choice and control over the types of services they need and the care providers they seek to help them achieve their goals

Although the government provides the funds and has formally handed over decision making to the recipients of care services, one thing they cannot do for recipients is guarantee good quality carers and services.

Not all carers are the same, and not all provide the same high standard of care and service. More often than not it can take time to find the right team of individuals to provide the best possible care. Given the high demand for carers in the disability and aged care industries, qualified and dedicated carers are hard to find and sometimes harder to keep.

So, how do you find high-quality carers?

Finding the right team

There are many tools to find care providers:

Local agencies and organisationsUse google search, find local nursing, personal care, etc. Check out the website, call and enquire about prices,services and availability to meet your needs.
Carer directories:These are a little bit like “dating sites” for carers.Enter your postcode into the search bar, and select type of carer you are looking for - carers and their photos appear. Once you register, you can contact and interview each individual.

These directories avoid the middleman costs of agencies, and are a great way of maximising care hours, while also knowing carers are being properly paid and have police checks and insurance taken care of. Increasingly, these organisations are adding training initiatives and care recipients safeguarding initiatives to compare more favourably to agencies. Some of these directory type sites include:

Mable: www.mable.com.au. There is a need to register in order to use their system for bookings and confirming time sheets. The service invoicesfor payment plus 5% and will withhold 10% of the carer pay (they keep 15% of the invoice value). All carers require an ABN and set their own prices.

Home Carers Direct:
www.homecarersdirect.com.au. The service invoices for payment plus 5% and will withhold 10% of the carer pay (they keep 15% of the invoice value). All carers require an ABN and set their own prices.

Hireup: www.hireup.com.au (mostly disability). Carers are all casuals (no ABN) and paid the same award rate.

Home care Heros: www.homecareheros.com (mostly disability). Carers are all casuals (no ABN) and paid the same award rate.

Live In carers: www.live-incarers.com.au, advice and advertising for affordable carers who live in the home. Very good option for remote home care needs and getting more hours whereby privately contribute accommodation and meals.
Capital GuardiansUse the provider search option.Delivers local results by type for all Capital Guardians payees and often includes police check and insurance information.
Social MediaFacebook and LinkedIn, both have the ability to communicate carer needs (advertise) for free to ‘friends/contacts’ and within ‘Groups’ (that allow it). There are many carer/disability related groups on Facebook where one could post regarding your needs, consider also groups dedicated to your local area. Both platforms also allow paid advertising, however, this is more a business tool, not for individuals finding carers.
Advertisingo Gumtree.com.au, free listings, and great local search
o Local papers, looking for carer advertisements, or putting in your own
o Seek.com.au, Jora.com, Indeed.com.au advertisements
o Local Job boards, online or the supermarket!

Key considerations when choosing the ideal service provider:

  • Look locally. If a service provider must travel to see you, you may be
  • charged with additional travel costs
  • Get several quotes and consider/compare price
  • Word of mouth, reviews, and recommendations
  • They’re passionate about their job
  • You and your carer get along well
  • They respect your decisions, wants, and needs
  • They have the necessary experience and qualifications
  • You can build a long-term relationship built on mutual trust
  • They are patient, reliable and observant

The pros and cons of agencies vs private providers.

Agency Carers

Pros, they usually (or should!):
  • Handle all your needs, no matter how complex or long-term your care needs are
  • Have quality management systems
  • Provide ongoing staff training & qualification standards
  • Attract high-quality full-time staff
  • Never miss an appointment, if a carer is unable to make it, or is sick,
  • they will find a replacement
  • Carers are trained, vetted, insured, and have passed police checks
Cons
  • Priced high, especially for shorter care hours
  • May be less affordable
  • Agency carers are often in a rush: They focus on delivering care as
  • quickly as possible, in order to move onto the next person
    May not get consistency with carers

Online Carer Directories

Pros
  • Many carers negotiate their own rate and therefore each carer may price their service differently
  • Carers have insurance and police checks
  • Available online scheduling, approval, and billing tools for “self-management”
  • Priced lower than agencies
Cons
  • When a carer is unwell/absent, there is no guarantee for replacement
  • No guarantee of high quality of care

Independent Carers

Pros
  • You get to choose your carerand build a direct relationship with them
  • The carer gets a greater share of the hourly rate you pay so may charge less than agency prices
Cons
  • Finding the right carer can take time and you may have to give lots of personal information during your search
  • Arranging services to mutual agreed times can sometimes be difficult
  • You have no way of knowing if they are good at their job or are safe people to let into your home
  • When a carer is unwell/absent, there is no guarantee for replacement
  • No guarantee of high-quality care
By | 2020-11-04T06:10:49+00:00 October 26th, 2020|Homecare, NDIS|Comments Off on Finding Great Carers
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About the Author:

Ross McDonald B.Comm (Hons), CA, MBA, is the founder of Capital Guardians, a ‘paypal’ for aged care (residential personal expenses and home care packages) and disability clients (plan management).
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