SPRINGFIELD, NJ – “Everyday we are inundated by the headlines of COVID-19 infections and death tolls. We are bombarded with images of hospitals being overrun. We see doctors and nurses fighting to save lives,” says Adam Blecker, President of Seniors In Place, LLC.
“What we do not see, are the heroes who are quietly saving lives, every day, keeping them safe at home. Certified Home Health Aides serve as a life-line for Seniors and the At-Risk population, by providing them with the support they need to remain safe at home,” continues Blecker. “Our caregivers are putting themselves at risk, to protect the clients and families with whom they have fostered long-term relationships.”
Today, more than ever, it is critical that our Seniors and At-Risk population receive the care they need to be able to “Shelter In Place” … Safely. New Jersey has always had a robust set of regulations to protect our most vulnerable citizens, but often, in crisis, families do not have the benefit of fully vetting an agency or caregiver to provide their loved one with the support they need most.
As a Champion for Consumer Protection, Adam Blecker is the first to point out that New Jersey has some of the most robust regulations in our nation to protect people who need in-home care. Blecker, recommends that anyone interested in receiving Home Care services, follow a few simple steps to ensure they are receiving the care they deserve.
- Ensure that the agency you are talking with is registered as a “Health Care Service Firm” in New Jersey. You can verify the agency here: https://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/hcservice.
- Make sure that your agency is accredited by one of the 6 approved accrediting bodies in New Jersey: Commission on Accreditation for Home Care (CAHC), Community Health Accreditation Partner (CHAP), Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC), National Institute of Home Care Accreditation (NIHCA), National Association of Home Care and Hospice (NAHC), or the Joint Commission (JCAHO). Ask the provider who they are accredited with and verify with the Accreditation body that they are in good standing.
- Make sure, if you are receiving assistance with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), (such as bathing, toileting, transferring, or any other hands-on care) that the caregiver providing that care is a Certified Home Health Aide (CHHA) registered in New Jersey. It is important to note that in New Jersey CHHAs must work for a Health Care Service Firm under the direction of a Registered Nurse and are not allowed to provide hands-on care independently.
- Ask what policies and procedures the agency has put in place to protect you and your loved-ones during the COVID-19 pandemic. Make sure you are comfortable with the answer. If they don’t have a policy, look elsewhere! The best providers have responded quickly to this pandemic, rapidly deploying and adjusting policies to address the changing environment and implementing guidelines from the CDC.
- Don’t forget the old adage, ‘if it sounds to good to be true, it probably is’. Most reputable agencies are within a few dollars of one another. If you find a provider who is vastly less expensive, proceed with caution.
- Following these steps may just save your loved-one’s life.
“Some agencies are recognizing the contribution of caregivers in tangible ways. For instance, at Seniors In Place, we are paying caregivers between 15-20% more during the time of COVID-19 without charging our families and clients more.”
Seniors In Place has:
- Instituted strict policies to protect caregivers and their clients from COVID-19, based upon information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reviewed daily
- Provided N95 masks and gloves to all caregivers to minimize the spread of the virus and given our caregivers access to face-shields when required
- Trained and continually monitors caregivers on COVID-19 and infection control, including the correct way to wash hands and use Personal Protective Equipment
- If a caregiver has been exposed to someone who has tested positive to COVID-19, that caregiver is immediately put on PAID quarantine, and requires a doctor’s clearance to return to work
- Instituted daily Telehealth check-ins with caregivers in at-risk situations
- Safely provided care for people who have recovered from or have been in a facility where there was COVID-19 and have returned home, by instituting a strict policy in which the patient must be cleared by a doctor, and the patient and caregiver are both provided with and required to wear N95 masks
- Maintains an entire family of nurses, case managers, and staff who are on-call 24/7
- Has developed a free 24/7 Rapid Response for Home Care Hotline – to respond quickly to an urgent need for care
About Adam Blecker
Adam Blecker is the President of Seniors In Place; President of the Board of Directors for the Home Health Services Association of New Jersey; and is a Trustee on the Board of Trustees for the Commission on Accreditation for Home Care. He is an influential advocate for regulatory compliance for private duty agencies. He meets regularly with state legislature and has testified in Trenton in support of laws that improve the safety of all seniors throughout New Jersey.
About Seniors In Place LLC
For two decades, the Seniors In Place family has provided millions of hours of in-home and in-facility care for thousands of New Jersey families.
- It is accredited with Distinction by The Commission on Accreditation for Home Care, the largest accrediting body in the state of New Jersey
- In 2018 and 2019, Seniors In Place was honored as New Jersey’s Family Business of the Year Finalist out of 400 candidates.
- Seniors In Place caregivers are all state-certified, insured, receive benefits, and are continuously educated and regularly evaluated.
- Seniors In Place caregivers are all employees – NOT independent contractors.
For more information, visit our website at www.SeniorsInPlace.com