If you're new to home caregiving, or entering a new home health care assignment, It’s normal to be nervous before you start your new assignment. You may be scared you’ll make a mistake or that you’ll forget something on the job. While you may always consult your supervisor if you have questions, the most important thing is to show your patients, and their families, that you’re dedicated and putting the most effort possible into your job.
First, arrive on time to your new assignment, and log your check in/out time per your supervisor's instructions. Keep your work time consistent, and if you run over, don't let it be no more than five minutes, unless the overtime is cleared by your supervisor
Start by understanding you are entering someone else's home, and you must respect their boundaries. You may ask the patient or family members what areas of the home may be off limits, and ask them to provide any guidelines for entering personal spaces or using personal resources. You should also ask about any religious customs or rituals that should be observed (such as keeping Kosher or Halal), so as not to offend or disrupt these rituals.
Next, write down all the patient's/DR's expectations. Having a documented list of "duties" can avoid misunderstandings or conflicts. Double check all your work before you leave your shift, to ensure the client or their family member doesn't complain about your performance. Even if you are a family member, it's imperative you do your best work and always be professional.
Finally, limit your cell phone use. Even family members may complain if you are constantly checking your email, using different apps, or talking casually to friends. Remember you are working and should be paying attention to your patient, and any personal calls should be reserved for scheduled break times.
By following these basic guidelines, you're sure to get off on the right foot with your new patient and their family.