Senior caregiving can change roles at a time when we least expect it, whether that care is for a loved one, or whether we are providing private care to an in home client. Changing roles would mean that as a person ages or becomes progressively ill, the needs of the client can change and keeping records can be an invaluable resource for the future care of that client. Keeping records current, can also help to keep a physician or therapist more in tune with the daily living activities of their patients as well.
In the beginning the patient’s needs can be just about assisting with preparing meals, doing laundry, or driving to doctor appointments. As time goes by, the client can get a lot more dependent on the caregiver as well as their needs can change with that dependability. Good record keeping can help to tell just when and possibly why the one being cared for is now needing more from the in home caregiver.
The challenges of caregiving are becoming better known as seniors are living longer and their healthcare needs are increasing. Given the current economic conditions, in home care has been found to be much more affordable and with 37 million caregivers performing care in the US, the burgeoning Senior population will need all the help they can get.
Every caregiver should be keeping records on a daily basis. The records being kept should be anything related to diet, medication, exercise regimen, physical abilities for that particular client. In home care would also follow this rule and can include family members as well as the client’s personal caregiver. This type of record keeping is very similar to a Nurse’s or Hospice plan in a hospital type of setting where there is a team of people responsible for the patient’s care on a day to day basis.
Daily records of a client’s care becomes a type of reference tool that can assist with the needs of the person receiving care and can help with managing their care as conditions and needs change.
Here are some reasons to keep caregiving records:
- Allow you to reassess the needs of the client
- Save time and money with doctor’s visits and keeping everyone on the team up to date
- Helps to reduce stress by staying organized and up to date
- Allows another caregiver to step in when needed
- An online record keeping system can help to share information with family, trusted friends
- An online record keeping system is easy to share with others and can help with sharing tasks and responsibilities
- Helps to manage your workload
- Helps to incorporate a plan of action and setting boundaries which can help with high stress levels
- Keeping everything in one place can reduce clutter and will cut down on having a bunch of hand written notes all over your work area causing chaotic working conditions
Once you set up and start using your own record keeping system to record your client’s daily living activities, it will help you to become more efficient, less stressed, and help you to be a much more effective caregiver. As an in home senior care giver, this would give you a more professional, organized work area to show your client’s family that their loved one is being well taken care of.