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How do home carers handle emergencies?

Home care is designed to ensure you or your loved one can continue living independently at home. Part of that means being prepared for an emergency when things may not go to plan. In emergency situations, you must have full confidence that your home carer has a plan in place and remains calm and compassionate while taking decisive action to keep your loved ones safe.

In this guide, we explain the steps home carers can take to handle emergencies effectively so you can be confident that should the unexpected arise, you or your loved one will always receive the very best care.

Male carer and female client looking at picked flowers on a park walk together

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How can home carers prevent emergencies?

Home carers play a critical role in preventing emergencies by providing consistent and comprehensive care to people who may be at risk due to age, illness, or disability. Here are several ways in which home carers help prevent emergencies:

  1. Regular monitoring and health checks
    • Vital signs monitoring: Home carers regularly check vital signs such as blood pressure, heart rate, and blood sugar levels, which can help detect early signs of potential health issues.
    • Medication management: They ensure that patients take their medications correctly and on time, preventing complications that can arise from missed or incorrect dosages.
  2. Personal care and hygiene
    • Daily assistance: Carers assist with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and grooming, which helps maintain hygiene and prevents infections and skin conditions.
    • Mobility support: They help with mobility, reducing the risk of falls and injuries by providing physical support and ensuring a safe living environment.
  3. Nutrition and hydration
    • Meal preparation: Carers prepare balanced meals and ensure patients are eating nutritious foods, which is crucial for overall health and well-being.
    • Hydration monitoring: They encourage and monitor fluid intake to prevent dehydration, which can lead to serious health issues.
  4. Safety assessments
    • Home environment checks: Regular assessments of the home environment to identify and mitigate potential hazards, such as loose rugs, poor lighting, or unsafe furniture.
    • Emergency preparedness: Ensuring that emergency contact numbers are easily accessible and that there is a clear plan in place in case of an emergency.
Female carer and female client walking together
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Female and male carer working together on the laptop

Planning for a home care emergency

The best way to handle any home care emergency is to prepare well in advance by putting a thorough, well-thought-out plan in place. Emergencies can be stressful situations for all involved, so having arrangements in place can alleviate some of the stress and enable your home carers and loved ones to focus on ensuring you receive the care and support you need.

An emergency plan is a document that contains all the relevant information about the person receiving care. It must be accurate, clear, and easy to follow, and it should also consider the person’s wishes.
Cherished home carers will be more than happy to help you and your family create an emergency plan. This plan should include:

  • Details of any medical conditions
  • An overview of behavioural, physical and emotional needs
  • Allergies and dietary requirements
  • A list of important people and organisations, like their next of kin, family or friends, GP and community nursing team
  • Details of any medications the person takes, including the dose, when they take them and where they are kept
  • Information about other care they may receive, for example, visits from community nurses
  • A calendar of upcoming appointments
  • Details on the type of support and care they receive day to day, their general routine and any strong preferences they may have

For elderly people, or those with a life-limiting condition, an emergency care plan may also include an Advanced Decision to Refuse Treatment (ADRT) or a Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) form to ensure that their wishes about the care they receive are respected.

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Tips for writing an emergency care plan

It’s important that an emergency care plan is clear, easy to read and provides accurate and up-to-date information in an emergency. To help achieve this, you should:

  • Use bullet points to make the plan easier to read
  • Highlight key information to make it more obvious
  • Avoid abbreviations or jargon that someone else may not understand
  • Type it up and print it out so it’s legible
  • Check it regularly to make sure information is accurate and up to date
  • Make sure the plan is in an obvious and accessible place in the home, like by their medication or the phone
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How can home carers help if an emergency hospital stay is needed

How can home carers help if an emergency hospital stay is needed?

If there is a chance that you may need to go into hospital with little warning, a home carer can help make sure you have everything needed in advance. They can pack a bag of essentials, like pyjamas, toothbrush, toiletries, a hairbrush and any other things you may consider essential and place it somewhere suitable so that should the situation arise where an emergency hospital stay is required, you can rest assured that you have some home comforts. It also alleviates the burden of family or friends having to rush around to gather the things you’ll need, meaning they are free to spend more time with you.

If loved ones are not close by, our home carers can accompany you to the hospital, providing continuity of care and reassurance during what can be a stressful time.

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Can home carers provide emergency first aid?

In some emergency situations, home carers may be the first on the scene and be required to administer first aid or call the emergency services.

All our carers receive full training to ensure that they are up to date with the latest first aid practices and can be relied upon to administer first aid promptly and efficiently in an emergency.

Our carers also closely monitor the people they care for, getting to know them and their regular routines and habits. This helps them to notice small signs that may indicate they are not themselves and know when to seek additional medical assistance at the earliest opportunity.

Female carer and female client smiling with each other
Male carer and female client looking at picked flowers on a park walk together

How can Cherished Home Care provide support in an emergency?

Cherished Home Care is committed to providing high-quality care that enables people to continue living in their cherished homes for as long as possible. Whether you receive around-the-clock complex care or some companionship a few times per week through our hourly care, our carers always remain vigilant for signs that you may not be yourself, as well as looking out for situations that may indicate additional emergency support is required.

In the event of an emergency, you can rely on our carers to provide calm, compassionate reassurance to you and your loved ones and ensure that your needs are heard. What’s more, they are fully trained to administer first aid should it be required and alert any necessary emergency services.

Our carers can also work with you and your family to ensure an emergency plan is put in place that considers your needs and wishes and provide help with any additional preparation that may be pertinent to your individual needs.

We can also adapt the home care you receive depending on changing circumstances. Following an emergency, our home carers can implement interim respite care, increase hourly care visits, or offer full-time live-in care if you need more comprehensive support.

Find a home carer local to you

If you are looking for a home carer local to you or your loved one, get in touch with Cherished Home Care. We offer local, bespoke care in your home and are committed to enabling you or your loved one to live well at home.

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