Many people become caregivers with little or no warning. Unless this happens to be your field of expertise then you will not be ready for the challenges which will lie ahead and how best to deal with them. Even if this is something that you have trained to do and are happy to dedicate your life to caring for others there are some basic things which should always be avoided:
This is probably the most obvious statement to make but it is essential to remember that this is one of the biggest fears of many older people. You not only need to not steal, you should also be aware of any situations that might leave you either open to temptation or open to an accusation of stealing.
2. Texting and web posting
Mobile phones are everywhere and you will probably have one with you whilst you are performing your caring duties. However, when you are providing care your focus should be on your patient and not on the latest web posting. The phone should only be used in times of emergency; otherwise leave it alone and focus on your patient.
3. Services outside the contract
The more you care for a client the more you will become attached to them and this can then lead to ethical problems. You may wish to help them and are happy to provide additional services for free. It is vital for your professional career to ensure that anything over the original contract is agreed in writing and signed off.
4. Making decisions for the client
Your client is still a person and should be involved in any decision concerning his or her well-being or healthcare requirements. You should never leave them out of the loop when faced with a decision. It may be preferable to limit their choices in order to make it easier for them to make a choice, but you should never rush them to make a decision. You are on their time and they will probably not be worrying about time. It is also essential to accept their decision if your client says no to something you know they should have, such as medication. You will simply need to try a different approach later or speak to your manager concerning it.
It is quite possible that as your client ages they will ask you to help them with something more personal. This request may shock you or make you feel uncomfortable. It will probably have been very hard for them to ask you to assist with something that they used to do independently. Always keep a neutral, professional approach.
It can be tempting to refuse to do something that you do not consider to be your job or that you are not comfortable with. A good caregiver will not be stubborn, but will demonstrate to the client that she is flexible in her approach. This will help you to build a good level of communication, which is essential to providing good care and to learning from any mistakes. Additionally, you will build a relationship with your client which will make your life and theirs easier.
7. Not respecting boundaries
Your client will have expectations of what service you are offering and what they expect you to do. You should also have an idea of your role and what behavior and tasks are appropriate and what is not. It is important to define these boundaries and to maintain your boundary even if your client wants more. You need to know what you can do and what you cannot do; this will ensure you provide the best care possible.
By Edward Francis and Foresthc.com!