How to avoid hiring an unqualified care aide for a senior | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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How to avoid hiring an unqualified care aide for a senior

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October 02, 2017 - 2:43 PM

PENTICTON - If you are planning to hire a care aide for an aging member of your family, better check their references and see if they have a criminal record.

That is the advice from Interior Health Residential Services executive director Cindy Kozak-Campbell following the arrest of a drunk care aide in Penticton last week.

An elderly man called 911 on Sept. 26 when his care aide became belligerent and he feared for his safety. Police took the woman into custody until she sobered up.

There are a number of classified ads for care aides online so people searching for help for a loved one need to know what to look for in terms of qualifications.

Kozak-Campbell says in order for care aides to work in a publicly funded facility in B.C., they must be a member of the B.C. Care Aide & Community Health Worker Registry and have completed a recognized minimum six month care aide program. The registry has a list of the recognized courses.

For those trained outside the province, the registry reviews their training to assess whether it meets provincial standards, Kozak-Campbell says.

Anyone hiring privately needs to perform their due diligence, especially when it comes to reviewing a prospective aide’s training and work history, she says. A criminal record check and references should also be requested.

Kozak-Campbell recommends asking for the care aide’s registration number, and with that, contact the registry to see if the person is registered.

In many cases, family members seeking a care aide for a senior family member may live out of province, so a private agency may be the way to go.

She says the agency will have done the appropriate screening and can hire a care aide on behalf of the family. As well, the agency will work with the family to ensure a qualified person is providing the care.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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