Learning need - To build trust with Care Seekers.
Goal - Know that building trust with Care Seekers begins with a Meet & Greet. Know when to contact a Care Seeker, what WeBookCare’s Health Care Worker standards are and how to be a responsible Health Care Worker.
a. The Health Care Worker will demonstrate how to book a Meet & Greet.
b. The Health Care Worker will describe when to contact a Care Seeker using WeBookCare messaging.
c. The Health Care Worker will assess how they compare to WeBookCare’s Health Care Worker standards.
d. The Health Care Worker will defend essential components of responsible Caregiving.
Assessment of teaching situation - Review messages to Care Seeker
Selection of presentation method(s)/materials lecture/discussion: WeBookCare app, and WeBookCare 101 course handout.
a. Explain why meet and greets are important.
b. Summarise best practices for meet and greets.
c. Demonstrate how to book a meet and greet using WeBookCare messages.
d. Describe when to contact a Care Seeker.
e. Perform comparisons against WeBookCare’s Health Care Worker Standards.
f. Choose a past or current Care Recipient and ask the Health Care Worker to defend if they are a responsible Health Care Worker.
Why are Meet and Greets important?
A Care Seeker has messaged you and asked to meet. Meet and greets are of paramount importance. It’s you who can help Care Seekers feel valued and appreciated, especially early on when relationships haven’t been fully established. By taking the time out to learn as much as you can about the Care Recipient, shows kindness and that you care. Health Care Workers who learn more about their Care Recipient will be more aware of the expectations that lie ahead. The first few minutes are critical. Plan and rehearse it well.
What are the best practices for Meet & Greets?
Number One – Safety and Trust
WeBookCare is designed with your safety in mind. Always communicate with the Care Seeker through WeBookCare's secure, private messaging platform, which protects you from phishing and identity theft. You should never be asked to schedule visits outside of WeBookCare or receive money directly from Care Seeker’s outside of WeBookCare‘s job and messaging channels. Messaging on WeBookCare starts when a Care Seeker makes an inquiry or a job offer. Afterward, all messages related to that inquiry or job offer will appear in your inbox. Most Care Seekers will want to arrange a Meet & Greet at the care location after you accept the job. If a message makes you feel uncomfortable, or someone tries to get you to work or pay you outside WeBookCare, contact WeBookCare Customer Services to let us know.
Number Two – Be on Time
You have communicated through WeBookCare with the Care Seeker and your first visit is scheduled. Download the
WeBookCare app before you go. Arrive on time. Arriving too early can be disruptive to routines. Arriving late is never advisable. Know your care location, where to park and entrance instructions. This way you will make those you are helping feel secure.
Number Three – Dress professionally!
Caregiving is a serious job, so it’s important to look professional, while still dressing appropriately for whatever you'll be doing. Don’t forget to consider your footwear, hygiene and accessories as key components of your attire.
Number Four -Be friendly
Always maintain a positive and warm attitude. When you arrive, introduce yourself. Your goal is to be inviting and to build trust. If your elder client is fully cognitively intact, highly active or even has dementia, your friendly smile and welcoming voice will go a long way. Wrapped around these communication skills is your personal energy, which both you and I know is hard on some days – but we make it happen because it’s important. If you want to create a safe environment, model the kind of attitude and energy you want if you were the recipient of care.
Number Five - Ask for a tour
Remember that you are entering a client’s home to ask them to show you around – even if they are living in a small space. Ask questions during the tour as this helps you get to know the home’s layout and assess the client’s mobility and true cognitive ability.
Number Six – Know client preferences
Find out what your client likes so you can provide them with their creature comforts (i.e., favorite chair or food, favorite book or television show, etc.) Doing so will show them that you are listening and care about their needs. Acting on this information will build trust, avoid potential problems, and help you anticipate their needs or points of agitation.
Number Seven - Be respectful of their space
At first, you will be a stranger in the home so don’t just make yourself comfortable. For example, if you need to see another area of the home always ask, “Can we look at this part of the home?” It’s a small way of showing an understanding that you are new, while respecting their privacy.
Number Eight - Take notes
Keep a journal of observations separate from reporting to note small details about their preferences or information that helps you better understand a client’s needs. This is especially helpful if an elder client isn’t verbal or able to communicate well.
Number Nine - Say goodbye
When it’s time to leave, make sure you say goodbye to the client and family if they are there. Keep communicating. Even beyond the first visit, keep asking questions to make Care Seekers feel in nurtured and to open the lines of communication. Stay in touch and message on WeBookCare as directed. If there are any problems, be sure to communicate early and often with the appropriate parties.
To end with another cliché, you never get a second chance to make a first impression. These pointers will help you to secure bookings and repeats! Good luck!
How do I schedule a meet and greet?
Meet & Greets are easy to schedule and important for Health Care Workers, Care Seekers and Care Recipient. They’re your chance to get to know the Care Recipient and care location. Here's how to create a Meet & Greet with a potential client:
- Navigate to your Inbox
- Select the conversation with the Care Seeker you’d like to schedule a Meet & Greet with.
- Request the Care Seeker to send a job offer for a Meet & Greet.
- Add the date, time, and location of your proposed Meet & Greet. Include a message as well for the Care Seeker.
- Select Send.
- Approve the Meet & Greet request within 24 hours. You’re all set!
Once your client responds agreeing to the date, time, and place, it’s a good idea to take a few minutes and prepare for the meeting. Take a look at our best practices for a Meet & Greet.
When should I contact a Care Seeker?
The secret to success as a Health Care Worker is nailing communication with Care Seekers. Messaging Care Seekers is one of the most time-consuming parts of being a Caregiver. If your communication game is off, you’re going to be crucified when it comes to review time. But I have a step-by-step process for you to follow that will ensure you get 5-star reviews. Therefore, you must get this right, which is where these pointers come in handy!
Your scheduled! Remind, Check-In, Report
The reminder message is optional, but I strongly recommend Health Care Workers employ it. It’s a chance to re-emphasise that you’re coming. Also, you can remind them of details such as the schedule the day prior to your visit. Often Care Seekers get antsy about new Health Care Workers so this will put their mind to rest.
The check in message is important to do. Sure, your Care Seeker knows the schedule, but it’s my experience that Care Seekers like to know you are at the care location, so they don’t worry.
Reporting plays an important role in building trust with your Care Seeker to demonstrate your commitment to the wellbeing of the Care Recipient. Other reasons why it's beneficial to report to Care Seekers:
- Health Care Workers who report to the Care Seeker through WeBookCare are more likely to receive a 5-star review.
- To provide the best and most personalised care.
- For direct communication between the Health Care Worker and the Care Seeker.
- For continuity of care.
- To show accountability for the booking, outlining the Health Care Worker’s commitment to providing safe, effective, and ethical care.
- For quality improvement.
- Acting as proof that the visit was provided.
How do I create reports?
The easiest way to report from your mobile device is through WeBookCare’s mobile app. The app makes it easy to share information, photos, and documents while you're providing care services at the care location. How you speak at home and in social settings may not be appropriate for a work setting. Your report must be clear, concise and accurate. Here are some fundamental rules of reporting.
- Reporting is an essential part of the care you provide. It will be reviewed by the Care Seeker.
- Reporting must be done for each visit.
- Events should be recorded chronologically (or sequentially and logically).
- Record date and time. It is best to write the date in full by month-day-year (e.g., October 9, 2016 at 2010 hrs. NOT: 10/09/12 at 8:10).
- Document in a timely manner, meaning as close to real time as possible to ensure accuracy of details and timely communication to the Care Seeker.
- Use professional language and terminology.
- Avoid using abbreviations. Abbreviations may not be understood or may be misinterpreted.
- When referring to yourself, use the word “writer”.
- Everything you write must be true, accurate, factual and concise. No opinions or storytelling. Only include notes of the care you provided.
- Do not include bias (document only conclusions that can be supported by data).
- Documentation should paint the entire picture of the Care Recipient and the care provided from the time the home care visit started to the time it ended.
- Vague or opinionated documentation can interfere with continuity of care and misrepresent your visit.
- Reports are considered legal documents and must be kept completely confidential.
What do I write about?
Start by providing details on how the visit went. Check off what tasks you did and the client’s mood. Finally, don’t forget to write if you have any concerns. Care Seekers rely on your eyes and ears to know how their loved one is doing. I like to keep my messages factual and non-opinionated, get straight to the point. But it can also be a good idea to include suggestions in messages. Or seek some further instructions. Be careful though, don’t go too over the top with reporting. No one likes a bossy Health Care Worker! Here are some fundamental rules of what to include:
- Observations: Observations are the facts and events that you notice as you go about your daily work.
- Daily Measurements: You may be asked to record your Care Recipient’s vital signs, weight, intake and output, and blood sugar level.
- Safety Issues: This includes measures you took to ensure a Care Recipient’s safety and any concerns you have about possible safety hazards in the home environment.
- Care Recipient Statements & Complaints: Document—in their exact words—any pertinent statements your Care Recipient makes about how they are feeling. This may include statements about pain, appetite, or emotions. Be sure to report complaints. (Again, use the client’s exact words.) Complaints help improve client care and/or find new ways to meet a client’s needs.
- Unusual Events: Report anything out of the ordinary that happens while you are with a Care Recipient. For example, be sure to document if a client refuses care or if the heat in the client’s room doesn't work.
- Report if a client refuses care and the reason for refusing the care.
- If there is a change in your client’s condition, or you are concerned about something, call the Care Seeker immediately and document this in your notes for that day.
- Provide positive feedback on daily accomplishments such as improvements with activities of daily living (ADL’s).
- Tasks completed: Report on what you did during your home care visit.
What are WeBookCare’s Health Care Worker standards?
To help keep our community safe and trusted, we’ve published our standards and expectations for all Health Care Workers and Care Seekers. We developed these standards based on our extensive experience in home care and from interactions with users of the WeBookCare community. These standards are intended to hold up our policies into a single framework that will help users of the WeBookCare community better understand what to expect from us and what we expect of them.
How will the standards be enforced?
Each enforcement decision is the result of careful and detailed work by a team of Care Advisors devoted to ensuring we make the right call. Our responses to violations of these policies have been and will continue to be based on the seriousness of the issue. We will strive to take the circumstances of each situation into account when reaching our enforcement decision, but we have limited discretion in our response to serious violations of the policies.
What can I do if I disagree with a decision?
Our enforcement teams are made up of dedicated professionals, but they’re still human. So, in rare cases, enforcement decisions may be incorrect. If you disagree with a decision we’ve made, you can contact us and we’ll re-review the decision carefully. The definitions of the standards and expectations themselves aren’t subject to review.
Will the standards change over time?
We’re always learning and growing, and the standards and expectations will evolve over time. Make sure to review the standards if you have any questions about a particular situation.
Health Care Worker Standards
In addition to behaving in accordance with responsible Caregiving, which apply to all Health Care Workers, WeBookCare Health Care Workers must meet the following Health Care Worker standards:
- Overall experience.
- Health Care Worker appearance.
- Profile accuracy.
- Health Care Worker communication.
- Health Care Worker reliability.
Our goal is to ensure that these standards are clear, and that our enforcement is proportionate to the severity and persistence of the violation.
Your care service either solves a Care Seekers problem or fulfills their needs. Every single day, you're making significant efforts to provide clients with an overall positive experience. This journey of providing your clients with a positive experience starts from the moment they find you on WeBookCare and extends beyond the moment they become your client. Although it's a never-ending commitment, encouraging them to become a loyal client by retaining them is considered a milestone of growth. Care Seeker opinions and feedback are one of the most essential components for the sustainability and growth of your care service and is considered important throughout the client lifecycle. The overall experience will give you an idea if the Care Seeker is either satisfied. Or dissatisfied? Learn about your client's experience and feedback to validate important decisions within your care service.
Health Care Worker Appearance
In the interest of conveying a positive and professional image to Care Seekers and Care Recipients, WeBookCare requires that all Health Care Workers meet a minimum standard for appearance. WeBookCare wants you to be perceived as professional. The appearance of WeBookCare Health Care Workers contributes to ensuring a professional image in our communities.
- Exercise good hygiene habits and appear clean and neat.
- Wear uniforms or clothing that are clean, neat and in good repair; conservative skirts, pants, tops or blouses are acceptable; scrubs are recommended for personal care.
- Wear closed-toed and closed-heeled shoes with a soft or rubber-type sole and heels less than 1.5 inches.
- Wear appropriate outdoor footwear, for travel to and from assignments.
- Well groomed with hair tied back and off the shoulders, minimal make-up.
- Jewelry should be limited to watches, wedding band, small earrings.
- Facial jewelry is only permitted if accepted by the client or facility. Note: Excessive jewelry has been demonstrated to promote increased opportunity for the growth and dissemination of bacteria.
- Keep fingernails clean, short and well-maintained.
You must not:
- Wear athletic-style clothes such as yoga pants, jogging suits, and sweat suits.
- Wear clothing that is distracting or unusually revealing of the body – including lycra tights (leggings), short-shorts, tank tops, halter tops, beach wear or other similar garments.
- Wear shoes with high heels, slippery soles, or open-toes or heels.
- Chew gum while on assignment.
- Wear Perfume/cologne in consideration of clients who may have an exaggerated sensitivity to fragrance as a result of their health condition.
Health Care Workers have full autonomy over their profiles’ categories, personal details and the care services they would like to offer Care Seekers. When Health Care Workers fail to uphold their promised profile commitments, it may harm Care Seekers’ experiences and trust in WeBookCare. Therefore, WeBookCare requires that all profile categories, personal details, and care services described on the profile page accurately reflect the categories, personal details and care services present at the care location from the time the job starts to when it ends.
Health Care Worker Communication
We expect that Health Care Workers have provided up-to-date contact information and are available to respond to Care Seeker inquiries or unexpected issues that may arise during visits.
- Answering questions: Health Care Workers should be responsive and willing to answer questions and help resolve Care Seeker questions at each visit.
- Resolving problems: Health Care Workers should be responsive and willing to make resolution efforts or abide by remediation requirements from WeBookCare for Health Care Worker standard violations.
- Reporting a violation: If you are a Health Care Worker who is dealing with a violation of Care Seeker standards during your job, we ask that you:
- Communicate with your Care Seeker—they're in the best position to ensure a quick resolution.
- Document the issue through WeBookCare message thread correspondence, photos, etc.
- Request or send money directly in the app.
- Familiarize yourself with the requirements of our Refund Policy.
Health Care Worker Reliability
Care Seekers’ care experiences on WeBookCare start at the minute of contacting a Health Care Worker. Health Care Workers who commit to jobs are expected to uphold those visits to the best of their abilities, to help ensure that Care Seekers can plan their lives moving forward with confidence. Health Care Worker job changes and cancellations greatly inconvenience Care Recipients, and the closer a change or cancellation occurs to the start date, the greater an implication it has on Care Seekers' ability to trust the WeBookCare community. Absent of extenuating circumstances or indicators that a Care Seeker may violate a safety rule or WeBookCare policy, Health Care Workers should not cancel jobs. If a cancellation is unavoidable, Health Care Worker should do their best to cancel with as much lead time as possible and contact WeBookCare if they need assistance.
Holding Health Care Workers to reliability standards: Health Care Workers who cancel jobs without an extenuating circumstance or indicators that a Care Seeker may violate an enforceable safety rule or WeBookCare policy will face cancellation penalties on their account.
Job changes: Health Care Workers should only change the parameters of an accepted job offer with Care Seeker consent (ex: adjust the dates, length of the visit, start/end time, rates, etc.).
WeBookCare reviews each reported violation of these Health Care Worker standards and determines whether a violation has occurred. Depending on the severity of the violation, WeBookCare may refund a Care Seeker from a Health Care Worker’s payout and/or suspend a profile listing until the Health Care Worker performs remedial actions. For instance:
In cases of misclassifications, WeBookCare may suspend profiles until Health Care Workers can confirm they have corrected their profile details. A reported violation of any of these standards is considered alongside past violations, which informs the enforcement decisions made by WeBookCare. Reports are reviewed on both the severity and frequency of violations. Based on this review, a Health Care Worker may face removal of payouts, profile suspension, and potentially permanent removal of their profile.
How can I be a responsible Health Care Worker?
The area of Caregiving has changed a great deal in recent years. As our elderly population increases, as our mentally and physically disabled are institutionalized less and less, and as the focus of health care changes to keep individuals in their homes, the knowledge about caring for these individuals continues to expand. Caregiving is a specialized part of our healthcare system and Health Care Workers play an especially important role in supportive care for those individuals who reside in either their own homes or a long-term care facility (i.e., intermediate, extended).
Health Care Workers trained to deal with the unique needs and problems of the long-term care clients are a vital part of the healthcare team. It is important to provide compassionate care in an environment that will allow the client to maintain as much independence as possible. Because Health Care Workers are often the closest to and most responsible for a client, an opportunity exists to establish a unique caring relationship with that client. It is a career that both women and men find extremely rewarding. Health Care Workers have some or all of the skills to assist others with daily activities such as personal hygiene & grooming, movement, safety, nutrition, childcare, support services, household maintenance, time management, rest, sleep, and comfort.
Essential components of responsible Caregiving
- Uphold legal/ethical Health Care Worker behaviours.
- Act professional.
- Provide a standard of care.
- Provide a concept of normalization.
- Maintain dignity.
- Maximise independence.
- Provide stability.
- Follow universal precautions.
Uphold legal/ethical Health Care Worker behaviours
Health Care Workers must review the job to ensure you know what is expected as part of your care services. Their profile details the care service needed. If you feel the Care Seeker profile is out of date or misleading, message the Care Seeker for an update. Incidents must be reported to the Care Seeker to correct situations and prevent them from occurring again. Care services must also conform to internal and external professional practice standards, local, provincial, and federal legislation and with Health Care Worker ethical principles and values. The following standards help to ensure that Care Recipients receive safe and appropriate care at home or in residential care settings:
o Personal Information Protection and Electronics Document Act (PIPEDA).
o Healthcare Consent and Care Facilities Admission Act.
o Patients Property Act.
o Representation Agreement Act.
o Health Professions Act.
o Continuing Care Act.
o Bill of Rights.
o Code of Ethics.
o Human Rights Legislation.
o Occupational Health and Safety Legislation.
o Employment Standards and Legislation.
o Workers Compensation Legislation.
WeBookCare Health Care Workers demonstrate respect for others, commitment, competence, and appropriate behavior. To be a true hero, WeBookCare Health Care Workers must demonstrate the following:
Keep a positive outlook: The work you do is especially important. Care Seekers rely on you to show up on time and stay the whole length of your visit, to give good care and support. You need to believe that your work is satisfying and of value to yourself, the Care Seeker, Care Recipient, your family, and others. This means being considerate, compassionate, sensitive, caring, meek when challenged, skilled and cooperative. Always remain of integrity and do not complain or talk about work in front of clients or others.
Never blame others for your actions. Admit your mistakes or shortcomings and accept constructive criticism while learning from others. Always stay for the exact time scheduled- notify the Care Seeker if you are unable to complete your assigned tasks or if you require more time. Do not stay or work extra hours without authorization from the Care Seeker-you need prior approval from them.
Know where you are going:
Health Care Workers should ensure they have the information needed to access a care location (ex: provide correct directions, update keycode, parking etc.).
Follow the Care Seeker’s profile for the Care Recipient and report to the Care Seeker if you are unsure of what to do. The client’s care cannot be neglected. You are expected to remain professional and be aware of your responsibilities, as they pertain to each Care Recipient, whether in a private home or a residential care setting.
Privacy Legislation makes it extremely important that you understand your responsibilities regarding confidentiality and the protection of personal information. Under provincial and federal legislation, Health Care Workers are obligated to protect information within your control from unauthorized and/or inadvertent viewing. Please remain discrete about what you say, how you say it, when you say it and where you say it. You need to know when information should be kept private and when it can be shared. Confidentiality means respecting and guarding personal and private information about the Care Seeker and Care Recipient. Information should only be shared internally between the Health Care Worker and the Care Seeker. Never talk with other Care Seekers about your work and other Care Recipients. Here are some important facts you need to know regarding confidentiality and privacy:
Health Care Worker Practices that Protect Client Privacy
- You must be compliant with federal and provincial privacy protection of personal information legislation.
- Confidentiality is a core value that encompasses all aspects of WeBookCare service delivery.
- Refrain from disclosing information unrelated to the delivery of the client’s care i.e., discussing family information/business in the client’s clinical record.
- Refrain from discussing clients in public places i.e., buses, restaurants.
- Be aware of the trust that vulnerable clients may bestow upon their Health Care Worker by virtue of their position. Do not take advantage of this trust.
- Distinguish between friendship and professional client/caregiver relationships.
- Provide care in the safest most confidential setting possible within the environment of care.
- Know when to withdraw when the client is involved in a private conversation.
- not make unexpected visits to the client’s home i.e., do not visit clients on your own time, do not bring anyone with you to your client’s home.
- Do not visit a client in the hospital or attend a client’s memorial service or funeral without prior approval from the Care Seeker.
- Carry a minimal amount of client information with you; what is absolutely necessary to carry with you must be protected from inadvertent loss i.e., personal information should not be left in vehicles for extended periods of time, but if necessary, should be stored in the trunk rather that the body of the car.
- Personal information must be safeguarded while in your home to avoid viewing by your family/friends.
- Be aware of the added requirements to maintain confidentiality in shared care environments and refrain from discussing clients with other clients.
- Destroy all documents containing personal and identifying information i.e., profiles, notes in a confidential manner when it is no longer required i.e., shredding. Return documents containing personal information that is no longer required to the Care Seeker for shredding.
- On every booking, you represent WeBookCare. You are our representative to the client.
- While on assignment, you may only complete tasks that you are qualified to do, and that are within the guidelines of your job as a Health Care Worker and for the care services for the client. If a client asks you to do something that you do not feel qualified to do, or that is not part of their home care service, call the Care Seeker.
- We urge you to carry a current map of the area or use GPS.
- You are a guest in either a private home or a residential care setting. Always arrive on time and adhere to the client’s wishes, if it is safe for both yourself and the client, and if the request is in keeping with the care service for the client, within the scope of your job and your capability.
- Always be polite to clients, their families, and visitors.
- If for any reason you cannot gain entry to a care location, contact the Care Seeker immediately, wait 15 minutes and leave a note on the door stating, “you were there, what time and when you are scheduled to return”.
- Always practice infection control practices.
- You are only permitted to sleep while on live-in assignment or sleeping night shift, as per legislative requirements.
The following are not to occur under any circumstances
- Always have communication flow through WeBookCare messages. Do not use a client’s home or telephone for personal reasons, except in an emergency.
- Do not give your family/friends any clients’ phone numbers. If anyone needs to reach you, they can do so by contacting you directly.
- Do not bring anyone with you to your client’s home.
- Do not visit a client in the hospital or attend a client’s funeral without receiving prior approval from the Care Seeker.
- Do not bring pets with you to your clients’ home without receiving prior approval.
- Do not discuss fees or payment with a client.
- Do not solicit or accept private employment from the client.
- Do not take a client home with you. Never visit a client’s home, other than for the scheduled visit.
- Do not leave a client alone if he/she is confused, ill or is at risk.
- Do not drive a client’s car unless authorised. Call the Care Seeker if your client requests this.
- Do not accept a ride from a client.
- Do not offer a client or a member of their family a ride in your car unless pre-approved.
- Do not ask for nor accept a key to a client’s home. If a client requests this, call the Care Seeker.
- Do not accept money or gifts from a client. Handling money for the purpose of shopping should be clearly detailed and monitored.
- Do not discuss religious, political beliefs or controversial subjects with clients.
- Do not discuss your personal or professional problems with clients.
- Do not participate in the witnessing of wills or other legal documents.
- Do not sell exchange or buy products of any kind to or from clients. If any compromising situations arise, call the Care Seeker immediately.
- Do not enter or remain in a client’s home while the client is not at home unless authorized.
- Do not touch/borrow any of the client’s personal belongings.
- Do not bring valuables or large sums of money with you on assignment. When providing staffing relief in a residential care setting, inquire as to the safest place to store your personal belongings.
- Do not consume the client’s food/beverages, even if offered. (Unless prearranged, as with live-in assignments).
- Do not argue with clients about their care or assigned duties. Call the Care Seeker.
- Do not perform duties/tasks that you are not qualified to do.
- Do not discuss information regarding any client with anyone other than the Care Seeker.
- Do not discuss complaints or concerns with other personnel, clients or family members. Refer them to the Care Seeker.
Provide a standard of care
Health Care Workers are expected to assist clients with the activities of daily living to promote maximum health and independence. Health Care Workers support individuals so that they can remain in their own homes by providing a full range of care services such as personal care, food preparation, cooking, cleaning, laundry, shopping, companionship, and transportation assistance as well as making every effort to improve safety in the home. Please perform duties in accordance with the Care Seekers profile for the Care Recipient and follow any special instructions, you play an important role in monitoring and reporting any changes in the type or degree of help in order to support current levels of quality of life or if there are complaints or concerns about a clients' wellbeing.
Provide a concept of normalization
Often older people, while maintaining a level of independence, rely on family members and Health Care Workers to provide care and assistance. it is important to ensure the best possible conditions and routines at home. Patterns of everyday living that are as close as possible to the regular circumstances and ways of life in society help provide a sense of normalcy.
- Focus on caregiving as if it were your loved one.
- Respect client privacy and confidentiality of client information.
- Provide care with an attention to detail.
- Demonstrate a helpful attitude toward the client.
- Respect the client’s home and belongings.
- Seek clarification if unsure of request
- Remain patient.
- Demonstrate an ability to follow written and verbal instructions as related to client care.
- Report to the Care Seeker if home modifications or equipment maintenance is needed.
- Complete other tasks as required.
- Apply research and teachings from others.
- Follow the Care Seeker’s profile for the Care Recipient.
- Follow the schedule.
- Identify and communicate problems and needs to the Care Seeker.
- Clarify and communicate care services for revision.
- Complete tasks in the allotted time.
- Arrive and leave visits on time.
- Verbal and written communications are clear, as documented in WeBookCare charting.
Follow universal precautions
Universal precautions refer to the practice of avoiding contact with bodily fluids, by means of wearing personal protection equipment such as medical gloves, goggles, and face shields. The infection control techniques are essentially good hygiene habits, such as hand washing and the use of gloves and other barriers. Watch the video, "Occupational Health & Infection Control Measures in Healthcare Facilities"
Infection control practices are guidelines to protect you from contamination with bacteria, viruses etc. that the client may have. Nonetheless, it is important to practice infection control with all your clients.
- We must all be alert to the easily spread Respiratory illnesses.
- Health Canada expects all Health Care Workers to be alert for clients with “new or worsening cough or shortness of breath”. If you detect this in any of your clients, contact the Care Seeker immediately so that a complete FRI (Febrile Respiratory Illness) Screen may be done.
- Wash your hands with soap, running water and friction prior to, immediately following, between client contacts and after removing gloves for at least 20 to 30 seconds.
- Wear gloves when coming in contact with blood and all body fluids and discard after providing care.
- Protect yourself from potentially infected material (dressings, soiled linen, lab specimens) by wearing gloves, if you have any minor cuts, scratches or dermatitis of the hands.
- Wear masks, gowns and/or goggles in addition to gloves during procedures which may involve splashing of blood and/or body fluids, or with clients diagnosed with airborne infections.
- In the event of contact with blood or body fluids, cleanse the exposure site thoroughly with soap and water, and contact the Care Seeker.
- Clean all blood and body fluid spills immediately. (Use detergent and water followed by a disinfecting solution of 1 part household bleach to 10 parts water).
- Dispose of articles (used gloves, dressings, bandages etc.) contaminated with blood or body fluids into a plastic lined trash can.
- Treat all linen and clothing soiled with blood or body fluids as infectious.
- Place soiled articles into a plastic bag and later wash the articles in hot water with detergent for 25 minutes.
- Place used syringes, needles and sharp items into a puncture-resistant, leak-proof, closable sharps container.
- Wear gloves unnecessarily (i.e., light housekeeping, meal preparation).
- Wear the same pair of gloves throughout the entire shift/visit.
- Manipulate used syringes > discard the syringe and needle intact.
- Recap used needles.
- Bend or break used needles.
- Disregard an accidental needle stick injury or other exposure such as a splash to the eyes or mouth. Notify the Care Seeker immediately.
Hand washing procedure
Hand washing is the single most important procedure used to prevent the spread of infection. ALWAYS WASH YOUR HANDS:
- Immediately upon entering and again before leaving a client’s home.
- Before and after skin-to-skin client contact.
- Between tasks with the same client.
- Before and after handling invasive devices such as feeding tubes and urinary catheters.
- After removing gloves.
- Before preparing any food or drink.
- After touching waste baskets, garbage cans.
- After cleaning up spills.
- After blowing nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- After using the bathroom.
- When hands become dirty.
What soap to use?
- Only use soap from pump dispensers or squeeze bottles (soap bars can harbour germs).
- If hand washing facilities are unavailable use alcohol-based waterless hand washing product.
Hand washing technique for Health Care Workers:
- Push watch upwards on wrist.
- Wet hands thoroughly, apply soap and lather well.
- Rub hands thoroughly for at least 15 to 30 seconds, making sure you cover all surfaces of the hands and fingers (including between fingers, across bent knuckles, around nail beds, fingertips and under fingernails if possible).
- Rinse well under running water and pat dry with paper towel.
- Turn off taps with paper towel, and then discard.
Safety habits for the Kitchen
- Keep clothing, paper and kitchen towels away from burners.
- Keep pot handles turned toward the back of the stove and use potholders when handling hot items. These actions prevent accidental spills that can cause burns, slips or even fires.
- Be careful not to overheat fats and oils. This can cause fires.
- When using gas, make sure the burner is properly lit. Watch out for escaping gas.
- When clients have poor vision, you might suggest the use of red nail polish to mark the “OFF” position on the stove controls. (Only do this with their permission.).
- When you have finished cooking, double check to see that all burners and the oven are turned off.
- Store all knives carefully. When using knives, always hold the blade facing away from the body. When cutting foods, make sure your hands are dry; greasy or wet hands make accidental cuts more likely.
- Keep frequently used kitchen supplies on lower shelves where they can be easily seen and reached.
- To prevent slips and falls, do not wax kitchen floors. Wipe all spills promptly to prevent slips and falls
- Keep electrical appliances in good working order. Use them in areas away from water to prevent electrocution.
- Do not leave food cooking on stove or in oven unattended.
As a general rule, kitchen safety means developing the habit of preventing the spread of infection.
What are Health Care Workers credentials?
Show off your credentials. You have worked hard for them. Even if you think your credentials are not relevant to your job, it helps Care Seekers to learn about your educational background, skills and interests. Don’t be afraid to brag. You can list your credentials right in the WeBookCare app and earn badges that show off those qualifications.
An academic degree is a qualification awarded to students upon successful completion of a course of study in higher education, usually at a college or university. These institutions commonly offer degrees at various levels, usually including bachelor's, master's and doctorates, often alongside other academic certificates, and professional degrees. The most common undergraduate degree is the bachelor's degree, although in some countries there are lower-level higher education qualifications that are also titled degrees (e.g., associate degrees and foundation degrees). Degrees commonly associated with Caregiving include:
- Social Work
- Rehabilitation and therapy
- Mental and social health
- Health and social sciences
You need to be licensed in your province or territory before you can practice as a nurse. In Canada, the nursing profession is self-regulated – the provincial and territorial nursing bodies regulate the practice of nursing to best serve the interests of the public. As such, the requirements for licensure are established by the provincial and territorial nursing bodies.
A diploma is a certificate or deed issued by an educational institution, such as college or university, that testifies that the recipient has successfully completed two years of study. Alternatively, this document can simply be referred to as a degree certificate or graduation certificate, or as a parchment. Diplomas commonly associated with Caregiving include:
- Licensed Practical Nurse
- Registered Practical Nurse
One-year certificate programs in the arts, business, and science are designed to give you a strong foundation in your intended area of study. Certificates commonly associated with Caregiving include:
- Healthcare Assistant Program
- Certificate Program in Developmental Disabilities
Healthcare Assistant Program
The Healthcare Assistant Program is generally a 35-week Dual Certificate program that prepares students to work as Community Support Workers at community agencies and as Resident Care Attendants in long term care facilities. The program is based on the Provincial Home Support/Resident Care Attendant curriculum, Ministry of Education of B.C. It provides basic theory in the context of culturally appropriate care techniques for normal physical and mental health requirements, growth and development, interpersonal & communication skills, diseases, handling emergencies, and work responsibility. The focus of the program is on developing skills to assist others with daily activities such as personal hygiene & grooming, movement, safety, nutrition, childcare, household maintenance, time management, rest, sleep, and comfort.
The Certificate Program in Developmental Disabilities
The Certificate Program in Developmental Disabilities is intended to enhance the skills and knowledge of professionals working with people with disabilities in a variety of settings. Students become skilled at supporting people of all ages to live as independently as possible while promoting inclusive communities. Courses focus on mental and physical health, interpersonal skills, teaching, and positive behavior supports. Students also learn how to collaborate and build relationships with family members, and to work with the diverse network of professionals who support people with developmental disabilities.
First Aid Level I & CPR/AED: Health Care Workers should hold a current First Aid Level One and CPR/AED certificate as a condition of Caregiving and to update it as required by the training authority.
Food Safe: A food handling, sanitation and work safety course designed for food service establishment operators and front-line food service workers. The course covers important food safety and worker safety information including foodborne illness, receiving, and storing food, preparing food, serving food, cleaning and sanitizing.
WHMIS: WHMIS is a short form for Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System. It is a national system for providing information on the safe use of hazardous products in the workplace. WHMIS was created to ensure every Canadian worker's right to know about the safety and health hazards is met to help reduce the injuries, illnesses, deaths, medical costs, fires and explosions caused by the unsafe use of hazardous products. Hazardous products can be used safely if appropriate precautions are followed.
BC Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry Courses
- Health Care Assistant Practice in British Columbia
- Skills to Support Independent Living
- Core Indigenous Cultural Safety Health Training
- Body Mechanics and Client Mobility
- Infection Prevention
- Medication Basics for Health Care Assistants
- Planning, Time Management & Organization for HCAs
- Dementia Care
SafeCare BC Courses
- The Canadian Mental Health Association offers the following suicide and alertness training courses:
- Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) is a two-day interactive workshop in suicide intervention and safety planning.
- Suicide Alertness for Everyone (safeTALK) is a half-day training in suicide alertness.
- Mental Health First Aid
- Medication Management for Health Care Assistants
- Certificate in Medication Administration for Health Care Assistants
- Long-term Care Management
- End of Life Doula
- Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction
- Activity Assistant Certificate Program
- Non-Violent Crisis Intervention
Health and safety
TB Testing: Health Care Workers are responsible for confirming that you are free from TB. This is done by having a recent (less than one year) negative 2 step TB test or chest x-ray.
Medical Clearance: A medical Clearance confirms that your physician does not have any knowledge of a physical or mental condition that may prevent you from carrying out Health Care Worker duties.
Hepatitis B Vaccine: Hepatitis B Vaccine is strongly recommended, but not mandatory. Hepatitis B vaccine is available at your local Public Health Unit or from your Doctor.
Influenza Vaccine: Influenza vaccines protect against viruses that cause influenza, often called the flu. The vaccine does not protect against other viruses or bacteria that cause colds or stomach flu. Several different influenza vaccines are available in B.C.
Continuous learning, also known as adult learning, is the concept of always expanding your knowledge to gain new skills and expertise. For Health Care Workers on WeBookCare, continuous learning is about encouraging you to steadily learn by providing tools to build your careers. The Education Centre offers free advice, guidelines, and tools to succeed.
What safety tips should I follow when interacting with a Care Seeker?
- Chart for each visit
- Make sure you're insured
- Set up a Meet & Greet
- Read WeBookCare’s Responsible Health Care Worker section in this article.
What is WeBookCare doing to help make care services safer?
Safety first, always. WeBookCare was founded on the belief that everyone should have the opportunity to feel safe. That’s why we work tirelessly to offer care services that put your mind at ease.
On WeBookCare, you’ll find:
- Detailed profiles with verified Health Care Worker ratings.
- WeBookCare Health Care Worker Insurance
- Verification of Health Care Workers using our third-party screening vendor for enhanced criminal record checks
- Care Advice from licensed nurses
- Electronic Visit Verification (EVV)
- Task tracking and reporting
- Safe, secure, and convenient online payments.
- Secure online messaging.
- A world-class Customer Support team that has your back around the clock.
- Safety information disclosed in a care location such as home equipment modifications and property info.
- Option for Health Care Workers to choose jobs and work environment preferences.
- Ongoing education for Health Care Workers.
When else should I contact the Care Seeker?
Your safety is our priority. If you or the Care Recipient is injured or requires medical attention while on a visit, you should contact local emergency services immediately. Once you’re safe and your immediate concerns have been addressed, report the incident to the Care Seeker and document the incident in your report for that visit. Describe what occurred, the nature of the injury, if there were witnesses, the location, what led up to the injury and immediate action taken. You should talk to the Care Seeker about immediate, and long-term corrective actions that can be implemented. *If there is an emergency that needs immediate attention, call 9-1-1 or for non-emergencies, the Nurse hotline at 8-1-1 for non-emergencies. *
Occasionally, the client forgets about their scheduled visit. Wait 15 minutes; if the client is not answering, call the
Care Seeker immediately to see if the client has advised that they will not be home and to talk about next steps.
Unsure of duties
If a Care Recipient asks you to perform duties that have not been included in the job and/or that fall outside your skills and abilities.
Refusal of care
Report all refusals of care to the Care Seeker. This way, all refusals of care can be accounted for to ensure that elder neglect does not happen under your watch. This is really, important. In addition to reporting refusals of care to the Care Seeker, also report refusals of care in your tasks checklist for that visit.
Even the most heroic of Health Care Workers may not be compatible with some Care Recipients. Our biggest fear as Health Care Workers is ingratitude. Most Health Care Workers find ingratitude irritating and might even grow to resent the thankless Care Recipient. But, of course, this will only make you feel worse. So, how do you cope when there aren’t any thanks in sight? Don’t expect gratitude from anyone. That’s right. The only thing you can control is how you feel. So, instead of making yourself suffer, why not concentrate on the joy of giving without expecting gratitude? Being at peace with this is one of the secrets to a greater sense of calm in your life. And that’s something your mind will definitely thank you for. However, if you feel unsafe and your health and welfare is at risk, then report this to your Care Seeker.
Change in health status
If the Care Recipients condition changes. Be observant! Be aware of any physical or mental changes to your client. Because you see the client more regularly, you are more likely to notice such as changes in appetite, pain levels, sleeping habits, regularity, stress/worry level. This also includes any unusual bruises or cuts on your client’s body. These could be signs of abuse or of the client falling while unattended. Always call the emergency contact in the Care Recipient’s profile if there is a hospital admission, illness/injury or behavioral changes.
Every year, one out of every three adults age 65 or older will fall. It is a problem that can cause serious consequences including broken bones, closed head injuries, bruising and more. This is a big problem and falls and/or fall hazards need to be reported to the Care Recipient. The most common causes of falls for older adults and what to report:
o No bedrails
o Throw Rugs
o Steps That Are Too Steep or Too Long
o Poor Lighting (Too Dim or Too Bright)
o Unstable Chairs or Tables
o Extension Cords
o Toilet Seat Too Low
o Medications that cause dizziness
o Uneven Surfaces
The biggest preventative for any of these environmental hazards or fall risks is to report them to the Care Recipient and to be extra careful.
Change in care services
Care services need to match a Care Recipient’s health care goals, medical condition, and level of assistance they require. If care services differ from what was booked, then there must be a new evaluation and update to continue to be safe and effective. Picking up on even subtle changes in how a senior is feeling, both physically and mentally, is an ongoing part of providing high-quality care. Start by talking with them and, most importantly, listening for any changes or complaints that seem to be new or more serious than usual. If a senior isn’t forthcoming or able to able to convey how they are feeling, you will need to rely on careful observation to detect changes in body language and behavior that can indicate things like pain, discomfort and confusion. Health changes should be discussed with the Care Seeker immediately to make the appropriate changes to their home care services.
The most convenient time to communicate with the Care Seeker is when appointments are scheduled. Prepare in advance for health care visits. If you can provide specific information, you’ll make the most of coordinating home care services such as travel assistance for seniors that do not have any other means of transportation (such as HandyDART, ride share, friends or family) to medical appointments. The cost for this service covers your hourly rate and mileage costs the Health Care Worker incurs and is based on the distance of the trip. Parking fees are also the responsibility of the Care Recipient.
What should I do if I'm concerned about the location of a place I'm helping at?
A care locations layout and overall accessibility can go a long way toward allowing older individuals and those with disabilities to maintain independent and safe. From small additions like grab bars in the shower to large alterations like ramps and ceiling lifts, home modifications and equipment are needed to live comfortably and safely, and often, must be updated as health conditions change. Home equipment must be properly maintained so the Health Care Workers and Care Recipient are not endangered. Regularly inspect before use. Care Seekers must always be aware that preventive maintenance and care of equipment is needed to reduce potential hazards and injuries.
What do I do if I feel unsafe during a visit?
We hope it never happens on your watch, but should an urgent situation arise—such as conflict with a family member, drug use at the home care location or threatening/violent Care Recipient behaviour-call WeBookCare Customer Service team to report it immediately so we can help resolve it as quickly as possible. If you or your Care Recipient has an incident with the police, a medication error, a fall, or unexpected death, notify the Care Seeker IMMEDIATELY or notify 9-1-1, depending on the severity. Your health and welfare and the Care Recipients is of utmost importance. Call 9-1-1 IMMEDIATELY for all emergencies i.e., chest pains, choking, unconsciousness, and severe injury. Call your local police to report a crime or 9-1-1 in an emergency.
WeBookCare Tip: Whether you’re a Care Seeker or a Health Care Worker, you can help prevent some urgent situations from becoming emergencies by having on hand the most up-to-date records of the Care Recipient’s medical history, medications, allergies, diet, and special needs. Use your Meet & Greet to discuss this information and ask the Care Seeker to include this in their profile or at the home care location.
Emergency contact information
Emergency contact information is just that – the identity of the person to call in case of emergency. Unfortunately, emergencies happen. In this case, the Health Care Workers will probably need to contact the Care Seeker or any other trusted contact and inform them of what happened. Emergency contact information is found in the care plan.
Employers must have procedures in place to ensure the well-being of workers who work alone or in isolation. Lone workers may be at increased risk of confrontations or even violence, particularly if they are on a visit during late night hours. Lone workers must be able to get assistance if they are injured or there is an emergency. See WorkSafe BC for information on ensuring the health and safety of lone workers.
Safe client handling
Point of care assessment for transfers
A point of care assessment for transfers is a quick mini appraisal you, the Caregiver do to make sure a person’s abilities still match what’s in their care service. Care Recipients’ abilities change. A person who could transfer with minimal assistance in the morning may not be able to do so in the afternoon. To keep yourself and the person in care safe, it’s important to assess a person’s abilities before and during a transfer. A point-of-care risk assessment has four areas that you cover, with questions in each area.
PERSON IN CARE
- What do I see and hear?
- Is the person ready?
- Can they follow direction?
- Can they lean forward sitting, lift their buttocks off the bed, step or shuffle?
- Is the area safe?
- Is this the right height for my task?
- Is there a risk of the bed/chair moving while completing my task?
- Do I have space, and do I have what I need?
- Does this task need to be done right now?
- Have I checked the Care Recipients care plan?
- Are there any changes to the care plan?
- Do I understand the task?
- Am I settled?
- Can I do the task safely?
- Am I focused?
- Am I rushing?
- Is my positioning correct?
If you identify something that could be unsafe, stop! Use another approach (e.g., mechanical lift) and/or ask for help. In all cases, report a temporary change in the person’s functional status and/or request a reassessment to the Care Seeker.
Mechanical Lifts and Transfers
When mechanical lifts and transfers are part of the care and service to be delivered, Health Care Workers must follow a point-of-care assessment for transfers to determine the appropriate technique. Mechanical lifts and transfers are included as part of the care services only when an Occupational Therapist has determined the procedure can be safely implemented. When you have concerns about the safety of the client or yourself regarding a mechanical lift/transfer, report this to the Care Seeker so that a re-assessment can be done. Do not try to lift or pick up clients if they have fallen to the floor. Call 911 for assistance.
Proper body mechanics
PROPER TRANSFERING IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY!
Guidelines for Proper Transferring:
- Sturdy shoes with closed heel and toe, non-slip soles and low heels must be worn at all times.
- Ensure the area around where the lift is to be carried out is free of obstacles, i.e., chairs, other people, shoes, water on the floor, scatter mats.
- Explain the lifting procedure to be performed to the client, BUT NOT if they are confused and disoriented.
- If a “two-person” lift is required, DO NOT attempt to lift the client on your own. With a two-person lift, the “leader” is to set and call signals to begin the lift. I.e., “on the count of 3. 1, 2, 3 – Lift!”
- Feet should be 10 to 12 inches apart, pointing in the direction of the lift with a firm, stable foot position.
- Use leg muscles for lifting by BENDING THE KNEES.
- Keep back straight and body weight over feet when lifting.
- Move feet in direction of lift. DO NOT turn trunk WITHOUT MOVING FEET.
- Maintain a firm grip on the person or object throughout the lift. If one person releases the grip too soon, all the weight of the person being lifted will fall on the second “lifter”.
- DO NOT allow the person being lifted to grab you around the neck.
- Bend knees as much as possible when lowering the person or the object at the completion of the lift.
- Use smooth, even movements throughout the lift to avoid strain to you as the lifter and jerking or jolting to the person or object being lifted.
- Keep the weight as close to your body as possible when lifting anybody or anything.
- If a client starts to fall, lower them carefully to the floor, then call the Care Seeker or emergency contact for help when a client falls.
PROPER BODY MECHANICS
As you work, be careful to:
- Give yourself a firm base of physical support by placing your feet apart and centering your body over the object.
- Keep your body as straight as possible and your feet flat on the floor.
- Face the direction in which you intend to move the object and place one foot slightly in front of the other in that direction.
- Keep your arms and what you are lifting close to your body.
- Use the weight of your body to do the heavy work when pushing or pulling.
- Bend at knees and hips so that the trunk and thighs do the work, not the arms and back.
Workplace violence is any physical assault or threatening behavior that occurs in a work setting.
WeBookCare is committed to a non-violent workplace through violence prevention and post-incident support. We have zero-tolerance of client-initiated violence such as argumentativeness, threats or verbal abuse, aggression, name-calling, demeaning language to hurt others and harassment. Our violence prevention policy states that we support a working environment that promotes courtesy, trust, equity and mutual respect. We achieve a safe working environment across webookcare and to our clients in the prevention of violence.
You are at special risk because you work alone with clients, family members or any person who could act violently towards you. Although WeBookCare makes your workplace as safe as possible, you must also protect yourself from harm and remain vigilant.