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The Security of Background Checks

By Homewatch CareGivers, LLC

There are all kinds of caregivers out there—family members, friends, neighbors, Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs), those who have taken courses for specific types of care—and they all have one thing in common: you want to be able to trust them. People who need in-home care services such as assistance with grooming and bathing, transportation to medical appointments, and regular companionship are often vulnerable.

Comfort for the person who needs care and their family is knowing that a background check not only has been conducted, but that checks are being done on a regular basis. When hiring a caregiver through a home care agency, it’s reassuring to know that it’s part of the hiring process to verify a caregiver’s history.

What Is a Background Check?

When someone says a background check has been done it means that they have paid to have a review done of the person’s past, to verify that they are who they say they are with the appropriate qualifications for the role.

There is more than one kind of background check:

  • Employment
  • Criminal
  • Universal
  • Fingerprint
  • International
  • Credit
  • Motor Vehicle
  • Education Verification
  • Drug Screening

There are as many companies running background checks as there are types of background checks, and along with that differing costs. These costs are not billed directly to the clients, but instead are part of providing peace of mind that someone trustworthy is taking care of the individual.

Some background checks might even include a review of a person’s social media use, medical history, and more details, that can inform their suitability for the job.

Can I Do My Own Checking?

Sometimes it might appear more affordable to hire someone who is not employed with an agency to provide care. However, there’s not much protection in that and doing your own background checks can add up. Each type of check will come with its own cost, so it might first look like a fee of only $20 and then become several $20 fees to get all of the information on a single person. Be aware that there are legal risks involved and permission is needed before running a complete background check on an individual. Background checks without permission (online or through a company) could be considered a violation of the individual's privacy.

A client or family member of someone who needs care can ask for information on what types of background checks are and have been done on people who will be delivering services in the home. In this way, a consumer is doing their own version of a check-up on a caregiver’s suitability.

When a loved one needs care, a family probably has a lot of concerns and background checks can be one thing they don’t have to take on. It’s the responsibility of the home care agency to ensure that each caregiver has passed a rigorous screening process so that families feel secure in bringing the caregiver into their lives and living spaces.

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