Category Archives: HomeCare Industry

Laurie Edwards-Tate, President and CEO of At Your Home Familycare discusses the devastating local impact the federal shutdown has on seniors disabled, and small businesses

Shutdown could cost region $7M/week

San Diego County’s economic hit could be four times greater than the average region.

Read the full article here: http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/oct/04/federal-shutdown-san-diego/

Disability Rights Activists Decry Federal Rules which Promote Institutionalization

The national disability rights group, ADAPT, decried the release of federal rules finalizing changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act “companionship exemption” because the changes will result in the unwanted institutionalization of people with disabilities.

“No matter what kind of propaganda the Obama administration manufactures to promote these rules as a victory for attendants and people with disabilities, the reality is that these rules will be devastating for citizens with disabilities who rely on Medicaid-funded home and community-based services for more than 40 hours of assistance per week,” said Bob Kafka, an organizer with ADAPT of Texas.

For more than a year, disability rights organizations have repeatedly raised concerns that the proposed rules would result in the institutionalization of people with disabilities.  In fact, these groups pointed out that the Department of Labor itself identified that institutionalization was an outcome of these rules multiple times in its own analysis of the proposed rules.  ADAPT reviewed the proposed rules and identified a dozen ways they would result in unwanted institutionalization.

In August, the disability community felt that Secretary of Labor Perez had understood their concerns and was planning to address them when he scheduled a listening session.  Despite the fact that disability rights organizations had urge the Obama administration to rethink these rules which were developed without the involvement of the Disability Community, the rules were finalized with only minor wording changes.

“Instead of addressing our issues, Secretary Perez and the Department of Labor steam-rolled over our community,” said Bruce Darling, an organizer with New York State ADAPT.  “The decisions were clearly already made. The entire listening session was a complete sham.  Secretary Perez should be ashamed of himself and we intend to hold him accountable.”

ADAPT is a national grass-roots community that organizes disability rights activists to engage in nonviolent direct action, including civil disobedience, to assure the civil and human rights of people with disabilities to live in freedom.

More information about ADAPT and this issue can be found at

www.adapt.org and www.DOLoffMYbody.org

Private Duty Insider’s “Champion of National Code of Ethics”

In the Private Duty Homecare Association’s “Private Duty Insider” newsletter, February 2013 edition, Laurie Edwards-Tate, President and CEO of At Your Home Familycare, is featured as championing a national code of ethics for all private pay services.

Read the full article “Prepare for the future and give clients peace of mind by creating a code of ethics” here »

San Diego North Chamber of Commerce Opposes SB 411 and AB 889!

Thank you San Diego North Chamber of Commerce for opposing SB 411 and AB 889 with a request for Governor Jerry Brown to veto both on or before September 30, 2012.

According to Laurie Edwards-Tate, President and CEO of At Your Home Familycare:  “It is with esteem and gratitude I wish to thank the San Diego North Chamber of Commerce for taking a firm stand against two State of California bills which will hurt home care and ultimately small businesses in our own community, placing seniors and disabled at risk. You represent the business community well with dedication and commitment.”

See the full SDNCC letter of support here »

 

Center for Disabilities Rights, Help Us Save Home Care

ACTION ALERT: Please provide your support for the Center for Disabilities Rights in its efforts to fight for for the interests of seniors and disabled, and to Help Us Save Home Care! We must protect the Companionship Exemption. Thank you!

There are two ways to TAKE ACTION on this important issue.

  1. Submit comments on the web. ADAPT has worked with the Center for Disability Rights to set up a system online to make this process easy for you.
    Go to: http://ly.adapt.org/dol
    When you submit your comments, be sure to edit and personalize the body of the message. Your comments to the Department of Labor will first be sent to the Center for Disability Rights who will forward them by the deadline to DOL.
  2. Mail written comments directly to the US Department of Labor. Send written comments to:
    Mary Ziegler, Director
    Division of Regulations, Legislation, and Interpretation
    Wage and Hour Division
    U.S. Department of Labor
    Room S-3502/ RIN 1235-AA05
    200 Constitution Avenue NW.
    Washington, DC 20210

Please TAKE ACTION before the comment deadline of February 27, 2012.

Laurie Edwards-Tate Takes Leading Role in 2012 National Industry Conference

Laurie Edwards-Tate with Val J. Halmandaris, JD, President, NAHC

Laurie Edwards-Tate with Val J. Halmandaris, JD, President, NAHC, prior to general session keynote speakers including Lance Secretan, Ph.D., internationally acclaimed leadership expert and author; and Paul Kusserow, Sr. Vice President, Chief Strategy and Corporate Development Officer, Humana. Photo courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate.

Laurie Edwards-Tate, President and CEO, At Your Home Familycare, attended the dynamic and informative Private Duty Home Care Association (PDHCA, an affiliate of the National Association for Home Care) Annual Conference at the beautiful Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas January 23-25.

Edwards-Tate presided as an expert in one of several Birds-of-a-Feather Roundtable discussions on the topic “Ethics and the New Age of Private Duty Home Care.”

According to Edwards-Tate: “It was heartening that so many private duty home care companies from around the country believed that a roundtable regarding ethics was compelling to attend.  We accomplished a great deal at each of our two roundtables, and all of us felt enriched from this experience.  Many of us agreed that we must continue this discussion at the 2013 Conference.”

Laurie Edwards-Tate with Andrea L. Devoti

Laurie Edwards-Tate with Andrea L. Devoti, President of NAHC Board of Directors, and President and CEO, Visiting Nurse Association, Neighborhood Health, West Chester, PA, prior to the PDHCA Board of Advisors meeting also attended by Val Halamandaris. Edwards-Tate has served on this Advisory Board for four years, and chairs Standards and Certifications. Photo courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate.


FACT Board Member, Laurie Edwards-Tate, Applauds FACT’s WTS Award!

WTS has selected Full Access and Coordinated Transportation, Inc. (FACT) as the San Diego 2011 Innovative Transportation Solutions (small program) winner.

FACT was acknowledged for its One Click/One Call transportation information program called STRIDE.  STRIDE is accessible via the web at www.stridesd.org and contains a list of approximately 148 public, private and social services transportation programs.  Riders can use the search engine, STRIDE, to easily seek out the best transportation options that fits rider’s specific, individual needs.  This service is also available through a toll free number, (888) 924-3228, where the callers receive personal assistance from FACT’s Mobility Coordinator.  The website and phone referrals serve as a one call-one click program.

“Congratulations to FACT, the CTSA for the County of San Diego, for its recent WTS Award due to its outstanding contributions in the transportation field! It is a great honor to serve on behalf of this wonderful organization as a second-term member of the Board of Directors.” -Laurie Edwards-Tate

Full Access & Coordinated Transportation, Inc. is a non-profit and Consolidated Transportation Services Agency (CTSA) that provides free transportation information and referrals to residents in San Diego County.  Their mission is to “Assist seniors, persons with disabilities, and social service recipients in San Diego County to meet their transportation needs.”

 

San Diego’s Laurie Edwards-Tate Re-appointed to Private Duty Homecare Association’s National Advisory Board

PDHCA Welcomes Back San Diego Homecare Executive to PDHCA Advisory Board

According to the U.S. Census Bureau projections, the number of Americans turning 65 is expected to exceed 70 million in the next two decades. In addition to the elderly, many people are injured, ill, or disabled at some point and may require help with day-to-day activities. The Private Duty Homecare Association (PDHCA), an affiliate of the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC), is a trade association of in-home care providers dedicated to helping the elderly, ill or disabled remain in their own homes. Today, the organization announced the re-appointment of San Diego’s own Laurie Edwards-Tate, president and founder of At Your Home Familycare, to the PDHCA advisory board, and introduced six additional new members. Edwards-Tate has been selected to help lead the association and provide experienced insight to address the increasing need for short or long-term in-home care.

“There are many pressing issues within the in-home care industry with active legislation on the table which will greatly affect its future.” said Merrily Orsini, MSSW, chief strategic officer for PDHCA. “With Edwards-Tate’s proven leadership, and her reputation as an independent thinker in the industry and vast knowledge of the business of in-home care, the PDHCA is well represented to continue advocating on behalf of those who wish to remain at home while they age or recuperate.”

A seasoned in-home care executive, Edwards-Tate is dedicated to tackling the standards and quality issues within the long-term in-home care industry, and to position in-home care as an easy to access and easy to understand service nationwide.

New PDHCA board members include: Stanley A. Rynkiewicz III, RN, MSN, WCC and administrator of Dear Meadows Home Health & Support Services, LLC; Brittnei Salerno, president and CEO of La Jolla Nurses Homecare; Lauren Simpson, RN, BSN and CEO of Potomac Home Health/ Support; Sherl Brand, president and CEO of the Home Care Association of New Jersey; Umi K. Chahal, CEO of Choice Home Health & Hospice; and Elaine D. Stephens, executive vice president of home care and hospice for Masonic Health Systems/ Overlook VNA.

In addition to the newly appointed, Shelle Womble, senior director of sales and service for ResCare HomeCare returns as the elected chair, and other re-appointed members of PDHCA’s advisory board are Bob Roth, managing partner of Cypress HomeCare Solutions; Lucy Andrews, CEO of At Your Service Home Care; and Cathy Sparling, executive vice president of Arcadia Health Care. Re-appointed as ex-officio are returning advisory board members Patricia Drea, vice president of operations for Visiting Angels; Karen Thomas, president of Oxford Healthcare Home Health Agency; and Georjean Sweis, national director of private duty for Addus HealthCare, Inc.

For more information about the PDHCA, please visit www.pdhca.org or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/pdhca or on Twitter @PDHCA.

About PDHCA
The Private Duty Homecare Association (PDHCA) was established by the National Association for Home Care & Hospice (NAHC). It is a trade association of home care providers dedicated to helping the ill and disabled remain in their own homes. PDHCA services focus on providing valuable information to its members, including help in understanding federal guidelines, financial management assistance, networking, business strategy meetings, certification and accreditation, and new product offerings. PDHCA is designed to answer all the questions that private duty home care providers may have regarding their businesses and practices. Please visit PDHCA on the web at www.pdhca.org.

State Report Sounds Alarm on Hiring Caregivers for Seniors

Findings illustrate the risks of hiring caregivers through private ads. California’s seniors are at risk when hiring caregivers through private ads, according to a report released by the state Senate Office of Oversight and Outcomes today.

Investigators contacted individuals who posted ads on Craigslist for in-home care providers. According to the report, five individuals offering services had extensive criminal records including convictions for drug trafficking, major theft, burglary and prostitution.

The report also found that 27 percent of caregivers in 64 recent criminal cases involving seniors had previous convictions on their criminal record.

Laurie Edwards-Tate, MS, President and Founder of At Your Home Familycare, has provided non-medical private duty home care for for 27 years. She says it is vital to engage caregivers from a certified or accredited, bonded company that has successfully met state and national standards, with a substantial history and specific guidelines.

“This is one of the most critically important decisions you may ever make,” said Edwards-Tate. “Caregivers should be background checked, well supervised and well trained. When you hire a caregiver, you should be asking a lot of questions. An ethical, reputable private duty home care agency will gladly answer them all to your satisfaction.

While a 2008 state law (Senate Bill 692) allows seniors and their families to conduct criminal screening through the Department of Justice, the report found there is confusion about how to do so and the service is not user friendly.

“It’s impractical to ask a family to conduct their own criminal background checks,” said Edwards-Tate.  “Even so, an individual is not under independent supervision and may not be properly trained. You also become liable for any issues that arise such as on the job, injuries, abuses or conflicts,” advised Edwards-Tate.

Edwards-Tate recommends following this Home Care Agency Checklist when engaging a caregiver for an older or disabled adult:

  • Does the agency have a business license and any necessary state certifications?
  • Are caregivers “employees,” making the agency responsible for paying all employee payroll taxes, as required by law?
  • Does the agency provide Worker’s Compensation Insurance, Professional Liability Insurance, and Fidelity Bond Insurance (this is sometimes referred to as “theft” insurance)?
  • Are criminal background checks performed on all employees?
  • Are caregivers provided training in CPR, First Aid, and caregiving skills?
  • Is there active management of the caregiver by a direct supervisor or manager who regularly visits the client and caregiver in the home or other living facility?
  • Is there an established Plan of Care created for the client?
  • Is there a 24-hour on-call number if there is any kind of emergency after hours or on weekends?
  • Do you need a caregiver who speaks a specific language?
  • Do you need a caregiver who can escort the client to doctor’s appointments, errands and social activities? What kind of transportation will be provided?
  • If there is memory loss, dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, is the caregiver qualified to work with a client suffering with these conditions?
  • If there are physical disabilities or infirmities, is the caregiver physically capable and trained to manage the client safely?
  • Does the agency work in cooperation with government and nonprofit social services and provide referrals to supplemental programs and services that may be available, such as those for veterans?
  • Does the agency belong to and is active in the Private Duty Home Care Association of America (PDHCA)?

“With the aging of the Baby Boomer population hitting us as 10,000 people turn 65 every day in the United States, this issue is rapidly becoming more acute,” said Edwards-Tate. “Seniors and their families may not be aware that with minimal assistance from a professional caregiver provided through a reputable organization, they can stay safely in their homes and maintain their autonomy, dignity, and independence.”

Caution Urged When Selecting Caregivers for Seniors

Seek accreditation and ask the right questions to ensure quality care and safety

The shocking arrest of the caregiver to a Pearl Harbor veteran in San Diego County on felony charges of elder abuse brings to light the critical importance of carefully choosing a caregiver.
Laurie Edwards-Tate, MS, President and Founder of At Your Home Familycare, has provided non-medical private duty home care for older and disabled adults for 27 years. She says it is vitally important to engage caregivers from an accredited, bonded company that has successfully met state and national standards, with a substantial business history and specific guidelines.

“This is one of the most critically important decisions you may ever make,” said Edwards-Tate. “Caregivers should be background checked, well supervised and well trained. When you hire a caregiver, you should be asking a lot of questions and all of them should be answered to your complete satisfaction. An ethical, reputable private duty home care agency will gladly answer them all to your satisfaction.

“It might be tempting to hire someone privately such as a neighbor or friend. But no matter how well-intentioned, an individual is not under independent supervision and may not be properly trained. You also become liable for any issues that arise such as on the job, injuries, abuses or conflicts,” advised Edwards-Tate.

Edwards-Tate recommends following this Home Care Agency Checklist when engaging a caregiver for an older or disabled adult:

  • Does the agency have a business license and any necessary state certifications?
  • Are caregivers “employees,” making the agency responsible for paying all employee payroll taxes, as required by law?
  • Does the agency provide Worker’s Compensation Insurance, Professional Liability Insurance, and Fidelity Bond Insurance (this is sometimes referred to as “theft” insurance)?
  • Are criminal background checks performed on all employees?
  • Are caregivers provided training in CPR, First Aid, and caregiving skills?
  • Is there active management of the caregiver by a direct supervisor or manager who regularly visits the client and caregiver in the home or other living facility?
  • Is there an established Plan of Care created for the client?
  • Is there a 24-hour on-call number if there is any kind of emergency after hours or on weekends?
  • How many hours do you require?
  • Do you need a caregiver who speaks a specific language?
  • Do you need a caregiver who can escort the client to doctor’s appointments, errands and social activities? What kind of transportation will be provided?
  • If there is memory loss, dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, is the caregiver qualified to work with a client suffering with these conditions?
  • If there are physical disabilities or infirmities, is the caregiver physically capable and trained to manage the client safely?
  • Does the agency work in cooperation with government and nonprofit social services and provide referrals to supplemental programs and services that may be available, such as those for veterans?
  • Does the agency belong to and is active in the Private Duty Home Care Association of America (PDHCA)?

“With the aging of the Baby Boomer population hitting us as 20,000 people turn 65 every day in the United States, this issue is rapidly becoming more acute,” said Edwards-Tate. “Seniors and their loved ones may not be aware of a gradual decline and may be reluctant to accept reality, or unable to plan for needed care,” said Edwards-Tate. “They may not be aware that with minimal assistance from a professional caregiver provided through a reputable organization, they can stay safely in their homes and maintain their autonomy, dignity, and independence.”