FAQs

Click on a question below.

 > What kind of services does Caring People provide?
 > Will insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or the VA pay for your services?
 > Is Caring People Services licensed?
 > How does Caring People Services ensure that the staff they are sending
into a client's home can be trusted?

 > Are staff bonded?
 > What about the health of the staff caring for my loved one? Have they been screened?
 > How do we set up services?
 > What do you do at an assessment visit?
 > How much notice do you need before a service request?
 > Do you send the same staff each time, or are there many different people?
 > What if we don't like the person you send?
 > What if the scheduled person is ill and cannot come?
 > What is the cost of services?
 > What if we feel we don't need the most expensive level of care for the entire visit?
 > How do we pay once services begin?
 > Must we use your company exclusively if we use your services?
 > Can your staff assist with medications?



Q: What kind of services does Caring People Services provide?

A: Caring People Services provides three levels of service.

The first is called a Sitter Companion and is appropriate when the client needs basic supervision, social interaction, and companionship.

The next level of services is called a Homemaker Companion. Services at this level include the same supervision and interaction as a Sitter Companion, but also include basic homemaking skills. Our organization does not provide heavy housekeeping services, but are happy to do all of the tasks required on a daily or regular basis in order to keep the home safe, hygienic, and comfortable for the client. Both the Sitter and Homemaker can make light meals and assist the client to take medication. (See the Medication Question below).

The most skilled level of service available is called a Personal Helper. This level would be appropriate if the client needed assistance with bathing and dressing, was incontinent of bowel or bladder, or had special needs for transfers or mobility.

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Q: Will insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, or the VA  pay for your services?

A: 

Private Insurance:
Some private Long Term Care insurance policies pay for our services. We are happy to work with families to help them verify their policy coverage, but we do not bill the insurance companies. We will bill the client/family as directed, and they may then bill the insurance company for re-imbursement.

Medicare:
Medicare pays for in-home services through the Home Health benefit. To qualify for this benefit, the client must have a physician's order and require skilled nursing care or some kind of therapy. This insurance is designed to pay for medical needs, and while they do offer some bathing and homemaking services, these must be provided through a certified Home Health agency, usually the one providing the skilled services. These types of services are available only as long as the skilled care qualifies under the Medicare criteria. Caring People Services is not a certified Home Health agency, and thus does not participate as a Medicare service provider.

Medicaid:
Medicaid also provides services in the home through Home Health agencies. While some Medicaid clients do qualify for "respite" services in the home, these services must also be provided by a certified Home Health agency, and so Caring People Services is not able to provide services under this insurance.

VA
The Veteran's Administration has many programs which assist with care in homes and facilities. We currently are a provider for only one, which is called "Respite". This program pays for services for beneficiaries so that their caregivers are able to be out of the home for limited periods. We encourage anyone who thinks they may be eligible for these benefits to contact their local VA office to explore their options.

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Q: Is Caring People Services licensed?

A: In Kentucky, there is currently no licensure necessary for agencies that provide only companion and bathing types of services. Caring People Services has all of the required local licenses to operate this type of business. In addition, since the owners both have strong health care backgrounds, most of the organization's policies and procedures are modeled after home health operational standards, even though there is currently no legal regulatory requirement.

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Q: How does Caring People Services ensure that the staff they are sending into a client's home can be trusted?

A: All staff are interviewed and evaluated for their ability to provide the same quality of services we would want provided to our own family. That is really the bottom line for staff selection. Of course, every applicant also has reference checks. Once an applicant is selected for hire, they receive an orientation and additional investigations are completed, including a state police background check and drug screening.

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Q: Are staff bonded?

A: Yes. All staff members are covered by the organization's bonding insurance, as well as liability insurance.

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Q: What about the health of the staff caring for my loved one? Have they been screened?

A: Yes. All new staff complete a health screening at the time of their orientation, and also undergo TB skin testing. This is not a regulation for our type of organization in Kentucky, but Caring People Services makes every effort to take all applicable precautions to assure the health and safety of its clients.

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Q: How do we set up services?

A: A phone call to the office is all we need to initiate a referral. Joni and Carolyn then set up an appointment with the client and/or family to go the home or care site to do an assessment. This allows the client to meet us, and also allows us to assess the layout of the environment, assure we know how to get there, and evaluate the client's needs and personality to facilitate selection of the best possible staff member.

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Q: What do you do at an assessment visit?

A: Joni and Carolyn both like to meet each new client so that our families know who we are, and so that we can see how the home or care setting is laid out. This helps us to be sure that we can direct staff to the right location, and also helps us to determine exactly what services are needed so that we can make appropriate staff assignments. We also use this visit to share any information we have with families that might make the client more comfortable or the caregiver's job a little easier.

We have strong health care backgrounds, have personally cared for our own family members, and have worked with hundreds of families over the last few years. This has given us the opportunity to pick up many little tips that other families have found to be effective. We also often know of various pieces of equipment or community resources that would make things easier (and perhaps even safer) for everyone.

While we are getting acquainted with the client, we are also asking questions about preferences, daily routines, and special needs. These are all recorded on an assignment sheet that is left in the home so that all staff have an opportunity to know a lot about the client from the start.

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Q: How much notice do you need before a service request?

A: We try to meet the needs of our clients at all times, but our staff work as "PRN" (as needed), and so must be reached by phone to accept assignments. Most of the time, a day or so is ample notice, and we have often even been able to find someone within an hour or so when the need was an emergency. The bottom line is that we are willing to make every effort to care for our client's individual needs, and we understand these are not always predictable. We don't make promises we cannot keep but we have a good track record for getting the job done.

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Q: Do you send the same staff each time, or are there many different people?

A: It is to everyone's advantage to keep the number of different staff members for each case to a minimum. The staff and clients are certainly more comfortable when they have been able to establish a relationship and routine, and frankly, it is easier for us to schedule on a regular rotation. We must, however, work with our staff's availability, and of course staff members do get sick or occasionally have emergencies of their own. We like to have at least two staff members who know every client in order to be prepared for such instances, but the most important thing to us is our promise to guarantee that appropriate staff will be provided - even if it must be a replacement person. One of the aspects of our service that many clients seem to like the most is that we never send a new person to knock on the door without an introduction. Even in short notice replacements, we will make arrangements so that the new person is introduced and oriented appropriately, with the least amount of inconvenience or concern on the part of the client and their family.

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Q: What if we don't like the person you send?

A: We make every effort to match the skills and experience needed with those of our clients, and try very hard to send someone of a personality type that we think will fit the home atmosphere and preferences of the client. We don't always get this right, and if we don't, we are more than happy to send a different caregiver. We feel that it is very important for the caregiver and client to be comfortable with each other. This is often a stressful time for families, and having the right caregiver can sometimes make the transition from independence to the need for assistance less uncomfortable.

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Q: What if the scheduled person is ill and cannot come?

A: Caring People Services offers "guaranteed staffing" to our clients once services have been started. If we cannot find a suitable replacement from among our many other staff members, then one of the owners or supervisors will provide the care. We understand the need for dependability, and want our clients and their families to be able to count on us.

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Q: What is the cost of services?

A: We charge according to the level of service and the length of the service visit. We are always happy to mail an information packet to anyone who requests it online or by phone. This information packet includes an explanation of each level of service and the charges for each.

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Q: What if we feel we don't need the most expensive level of care for the entire visit?

A: We do not want families to pay for any services they do not need, so we are willing to evaluate every client's needs and make a plan that is appropriate. Some clients require the bathing and dressing level for only the first couple of hours of the day. Once they are bathed and dressed in the morning, they need only a Homemaker/Companion level for the remainder of the visit. Other clients may need a Homemaker/Companion level during the day, but would be well served with a Sitter level at night. There are some situations where a Personal Helper level would be required for all hours of service. This includes issues of urinary or bowel incontinence where the client needs assistance to manage their hygiene, and also clients who require special assistance with positioning, transfers, or mobility. It is also possible that care needs may change after services have started, with either improvement or decline in the client's abilities and condition. We are always flexible, and want to encourage any activities that help the client to reach their maximum ability to be independent. We have many clients who use our services for brief periods, progress to discharge and then require our services again at a later time when their condition changes once again.

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Q: How do we pay once services begin?

A: All billing is done by mail. There is never a need to give any money to any of our staff. Initially, the itemized billing may be sent at the end of the first couple of weeks and then again in another few weeks. Once an ongoing schedule has been established, the billings are mailed at the beginning of each month for that month. This does not mean that you will pay for a service if you had to cancel a shift. We keep careful track of all services provided, and any unused services are either credited to the next month or refunded if services have ended.

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Q: Must we use your company exclusively if we use your services?

A: Some families have been covering part of the client's needs with private sitters or have family and friends who want to donate their time. We understand that many families must stretch limited financial resources and we are more than willing to be team players and fill in where needed. We will work with families to create a schedule that is affordable, and often refer clients to community resources that we know may be able to provide some services for free or from a third party payer. Of course, we cannot guarantee coverage for any shifts other than the ones routinely requested from our agency, but we will certainly try our best to help out if a private sitter should cancel at the last minute. We frequently work with clients who are currently receiving home health or hospice services, and are proud of our ability to partner with these organizations to provide the best possible coverage and care for the client.

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Q: Can your staff assist with medications?

A: Caring People Services may not perform any tasks which could be considered medical services. Therefore, we cannot make any kind of judgment call about what medications are to be given or when they should be given. We can, however, facilitate medication administration by reminding and assisting with all oral medications. Many families use a "Mediset" system - which is an enclosed tray with labels for different times of the day or days of the week - and find that this is a very convenient and safe way to assure that medications are given appropriately. Several area pharmacies will even fill these trays for a small fee and deliver them already prepared. If narcotics need to be given, we may request that our staff keep a log of all doses which the client takes in our presence so that there is no question about the medication supply.

We can assist with topical medications, as long as they are not being applied to broken skin or open wounds. Our staff also cannot administer any injections, including insulin, or insert rectal suppositories.

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Proud member of the Home Care Association of America and the Paducah Chamber of Commerce