HOME CARE & ASSISTANCE
NAOSA Gold Standards of Professional Practice™
Home Care & Assistance
The goal of the NAOSA Gold Standards of Professional Practice™ in Home Care and Assistance is to educate the consumer and establish best practices that will improve the safety and well-being of the consumer, prevent fraud and set guidelines to providing outstanding customer service. These guidelines are not meant to cover medical based assistance. Please refer to your State’s Department of Aging for helpful information regarding medical based home care.
NAOSA Gold Standards of Professional Practice™:
1. Licensed, Bonded and Insured: All NAOSA member companies will be licensed, bonded and insured. A copy of all the above will be made available to all potential and current clients.
2. Background Check: All caregivers are required to have a state criminal history records check or a private agency background check to ensure safety and to help minimize the risk of illegal activity.
3. Employee Screening: NAOSA encourages all agencies to screen caregivers prior to hire. Screening may include an initial or random 10 bar drug test, health screening, complete I-9 forms and verification of the caregiver’s ability to work in the United States. Drug tests are not mandatory in many states; however, it is strongly encouraged by NAOSA.
4. Reference Check: All agencies are required to perform a reference check of a caregiver prior to hire.
5. Agency Assumption of Liability: Agencies will assume risk for actions on behalf of employees and caregivers with both professional liability insurance and general liability insurance. Employment status of caregivers of agencies may either be an actual employee of the company or an independent contractor. If a caregiver is an independent contractor, the home care company may not be liable for negligence caused by the caregiver, making it extremely difficult for one to recover damages if harmed. Therefore, all NAOSA member companies will assume liability for actions on behalf of caregivers regardless of employee status.
Note: This is an important consideration if a consumer decides to hire a caregiver directly as opposed to using an agency. Careful consideration should be made as to the issue of liability and one should fully understand this risk before making this important decision.
6. Customer Service on Call 24/7: 24 per day customer service is important if a caregiver fails to show-up at the right time or not show up at all. It is also important for customer service issues and other complaints. All NAOSA members will offer this service.
7. Company Must Interview Caregivers Before Hire: NAOSA member companies must perform an interview of an employee, independent contractor, or contractual employee before the individual is referred to clients.
8. Confidential/No Fault Complaint Policy: Freedom to complain without fear of retaliation from a caregiver is extremely important. At times, clients will be unhappy for a variety of reasons, but feel a complaint could jeopardize quality of future care or even harmful retaliation. Therefore, all NAOSA member companies will offer a clear complaint policy offering anonymity for the client as well as other measures to ensure client safety. Doing so will assist in quality of care and help deliver peace of mind for clients and their families.
9. Assigned Customer Service Representative: When possible, NAOSA members will assign each client a single point of contact. Having a single point of contact will help ensure responsibility is taken as well as minimizes communication issues.
10. Communication of Caregiver Unavailability: Caregivers may call in sick at times and have other issues that prohibit them from going to work that day. NAOSA members will call clients in such cases and send a replacement suitable for the clients’ needs.
Are you a professional in the home care and assistance field? We welcome your constructive input to assist in the protection of all consumers. Please contact us.