Resources

Licensed Practical Nurses & Home Health Aides in Alexandria, Virginia

It is not an easy task to undertake when you are put into the role of family caregiver. It can be frustrating, frightening and overwhelming, especially if you don’t have the right information or even a clue on where to look. Here at AHSI, we know that having the right information at hand will help you make the right decisions for your loved one. Therefore, we have placed a variety of resources here on our website, with topics ranging from ‘Coping with Parkinson’s Disease’ to tips on how to select the right caregiver. You are not alone in this situation. We are here to help you any way we can.

We will be constantly updating and adding to these resources for your benefit. Please take a look through and check back often. If you need help or would like to speak to one of our experts about anything at all, please contact us and we will be here to give you the support you need.

 

  • Home Care for Alzheimer’s and Other Dementia
  • Your Loved One and Osteoarthritis
  • Your Health and Diabetes
  • Managing Heart Disease
  • Coping with Parkinson’s Disease
  • Neuromuscular Diseases and Disorders
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Cancer Recovery
  • Hospice and Palliative Care Support
  • Keys to Recognizing When to Consider In-Home Care
  • Questions to Ask When Hiring a Caregiver
  • Helpful Links
  • Medicaid
  • FAQs

More than half of all diagnosed Alzheimer’s patients- particularly those in the early and middle stages receive care in the comfort of their home. AHSI offers services to those who suffer from Alzheimer’s:

  • Continuity of daily routines and schedules
  • Familiar frame of reference
  • Daily orientation to time, place and people
  • Freedom to move about in a familiar, unrestricted space
  • Minimal stress, which can aggravate the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Dementia

Early Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s

At times it can be difficult to recognize and detect signs of Alzheimer’s or Dementia in your loved one. In fact, other people who don’t often see your loved one may notice the changes in your loved one before you do.
Early Detection Matters, the Alzheimer’s Association’s national early detection campaign, can help you to recognize the warning signs of Alzheimer’s in your loved one. Early detection, diagnosis and intervention are essential in order to provide the best opportunities for treatment, support and planning for the future.

10 Signs to Look For

  1. Memory changes that disrupt daily life
  2. Challenges in planning or solving problems
  3. Difficulty completing familiar tasks
  4. Confusion with time or place
  5. Trouble understanding visual images and spatial relationships
  6. New problems with words in speaking or writing
  7. Misplacing things and losing the ability to retrace steps
  8. Decreased or poor judgment
  9. Withdrawal from work or social activities
  10. Changes in mood and personality

Alzheimer’s Information and Resources

In most cases, people with osteoarthritis can lead full; active lives by properly managing the condition, however, in more serious cases, osteoarthritis can lead to frustration, weariness and depression especially when a person can no longer perform simple, daily tasks with ease. AHSI can help alleviate some of the pressures of daily living by offering:

  • Meal preparation
  • Light housekeeping
  • Shopping
  • Laundry
  • Assistance with recreational activities

Osteoarthritis Information and Resources

For a great resource on living with osteoarthritis, please visit the following sites:

If your family member is one of the more than 20 million Americans who suffer from diabetes, Absolute HomeCare Services, Inc. can help manage the disease through:

  • Education of what affects blood glucose levels
  • Coordination of a healthy meal plan
  • Development of a light exercise schedule
  • Meal preparation
  • Medication reminders

Diabetes Information and Resources

For great resources on diabetes health please visit the following sites:

AHSI believes in staying up to date with information on prevention and care when it comes to managing heart disease. We can customize a program that:

  • Develops and/or implements a heart healthy diet
  • Helps with the daily activities of living
  • Assists with physician-prescribed exercises
  • Provides medication reminders

Heart Disease Information and Resources

For a great resource on living with and preventing heart disease, visit:

People living with Parkinson’s disease have unique needs and challenges. Absolute HomeCare Services, Inc. understands and specializes in making life with Parkinson’s easier. We understand the physical, social, and emotional struggles that must be confronted each and every day from:

  • Motion And Motor Impairment (Tremors, Slow Movement, Muscle Rigidity, Erratic And Freezing Gate),
  • Changes In Sensation,
  • Speech Impairment,
  • Parkinson’s Related Dementia And Paranoia.
  • Swallowing Difficulties,

If you, or a loved one, are living with Parkinson’s, let us assist provide a caregiver to assist with daily activities and ease the physical burden on spouses and family. Our aide is experienced to help you maximize you independence while you continue to live in the comfort and familiar environment of home.

AHSI Services for Parkinson’s caregiving Include:

Parkinson’s Disease Information and Resources

For more information on Parkinson’s disease visit:

Neuromuscular conditions are complex because they can affect both motor skills and cognition. Regardless of the particular disease/disorder or the extent of its progression, AHSI caregivers can help by offering:

  • Cognitive stimulation
  • Safety supervision
  • Ambulatory assistance
  • Medication reminders
  • Getting dressed & Grooming
  • Light housekeeping
  • Laundry services

Neuromuscular Diseases and Disorders Information and Resources

For more information on neuromuscular disorders please visit:

You may find yourself in the position of caring for someone who is coping with the unexpected effects of a sudden injury to the brain. We are here to help your loved one establish new routines immediately after the injury. We can also provide respite care after a system of care has been established. If there are any medical needs, Skilled Nursing is always available. Therefore, you can rest assure that AHSI has many services that can help.

Brain Injury Information and Resources

For a great resource on living with and coping with brain injury, visit:

Many cancer patients feel more comfortable receiving care at home so that they’re not separated from family, friends and familiar surroundings. In-home care is a great option to alleviate some of the pressures of family caregiving when it comes to cancer, allowing you to focus on emotional support instead of the details of day to day activities. Our caregivers can help with any of the services, as well as supplement any hospice care.

11 Tips on Dealing with Cancer

Being diagnosed with cancer can be overwhelming. The Mayo Clinic offers some important tips on how to cope with your diagnosis.

  1. Get the Facts About Your Cancer Diagnosis
  2. Keep the Lines of Communication Open
  3. Anticipate Possible Physical Changes
  4. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle
  5. Let Friends and Family Help You
  6. Review Your Goals and Priorities
  7. Try to Maintain Your Normal Lifestyle
  8. Talk to Other People with Cancer
  9. Fight Stigmas
  10. Look Into Insurance Options
  11. Develop Your Own Coping Strategy

Cancer Information and Resources

For more information on cancer treatment please visit:

AHSI can give you a respite from the daily tasks that seem to build. From light housekeeping to meal preparation, AHSI caregivers can provide support during trying times. Skilled Services is also available in many areas as allowed by state law for the medical needs of palliative and hospice care. Learn more about hospice and palliative care and how it can help you.

Hospice and Palliative Care Information and Resources

For more information on hospice and palliative care support please visit:

The following is a list of questions that can help you make the decision on whether you should consider in-home care.

  • Has there been a recent emotional or medical crisis?
  • Does the individual bathe less often, or not at all?
  • Are pills left over or running out to soon?
  • Does the individual need help walking?
  • Is he/she verbally or physically abusive?
  • Is he/she becoming more forgetful?
  • Have there been recent falls?
  • Is your loved one having problems sleeping?
  • Has there been recent weight loss?
  • Has he/she lost interest in eating?
  • Is his/her hearing or vision affecting the ability to function?
  • If he/she smokes, are there burn marks?
  • Is your loved one able to do errands alone?
  • Is clothing being changed daily?
  • Is your loved one content to just sit in a chair?
  • Is there less participation in conversations?
  • Are there scorch marks on the pot holders or dish towels?
  • Are there signs of burnt pans on the stove?
  • Is routine house cleaning not being done?
  • Have social activities stopped or diminished?

If you checked even one of these questions, perhaps it is time to consider in-home care.
But before you select who your care provider will be, make sure you ask the right questions.

Once you have decided on home care, there are several questions you should ask any potential caregiver in order to ensure that your loved one will stay safe, healthy and happy.

  • How many years has your agency been in business serving the community?
  • Are you certified or licensed by any government agency to provide homecare?
  • Do you conduct national and local criminal background checks of all employees?
  • Are personal and professional references required?
  • Do you have a systematic method for tracking caregiver arrival and departure times at the client’s home?
  • Do you provide backup coverage in the event a caregiver cannot make it to work?
  • Do you provide 24/7 telephone service?
  • Does your agency require a minimum number of hours per shift? If so, what is the minimum?
  • Do your services include Personal Care such as bathing, incontinence care, and mobility assistance?
  • Does your agency maintain a business office where I can meet you and the office staff?
  • Do you have an administrative staff I may contact for information?
  • Do you provide in writing the care services provided, and clearly describe all rates and fees?
  • Does your agency make periodic supervisory visits to a client’s home?
  • How quickly can your agency initiate service?
  • Will your agency provide a free in-home assessment prior to starting service?
  • Does your agency carry liability coverage?
  • Can you provide documentation explaining the client’s rights, your code of ethics, Workers’ Compensation and HIPAA compliance?

AHSI can answer all these questions and any others you may have.
Call (703) 347-6755!

Making home care decisions for yourself or a loved one can be an overwhelming task. AHSI offers the following resources to aid in your decision-making process. The represented organizations are not affiliated with Absolute HomeCare Services, Inc. , Inc., but serve some of the same communities served by us. Rest easy knowing you’ve explored all your options and made the best decision to fit your lifestyle.

Medicaid is an income-based assistance program that helps pay for medical care. Medicaid waivers allow the elderly, and people with disabilities to receive care in the comfort of their home instead of in an institution. If you or a loved one have already qualified and are receiving benefits under the Virginia Medicaid program and are interested in receiving in-home care services, please contact Social Services in the county in which you live. If you do not have Medicaid, the first step would be to complete an application for Medicaid and indicate on the application that you would like long-term care services. For more information on the Medicaid application process, please contact us at (703) 347-6755 or visit the Department of Medical Assistance Services. You can also find more information at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Is Medicare or Medicaid funding available for these services?

Today, Medicare does not cover non-medical home care services. The exception to this is when a patient is eligible for Home Health Care (skilled nursing), continues to meet those criteria, and the home care services are provided by the Medicare certified Home Health Agency; there is a limit to how much home care will be covered. Medicaid offers some coverage to eligible Medicaid recipients. In this case the agency used must be a certified Medicaid provider. Absolute HomeCare Services, Inc. is a certified Medicaid provider.

I have insurance and I’m not sure if it covers non-medical home care and/or home health care services, will AHSI verify coverage prior to starting service?

Yes. AHSI is very comfortable in dealing with insurance companies. With your approval, we will check your coverage and let you know the results.

What different services do you offer?

AHSI is proud to offer a full range of non-medical home care services. Please call us at (703) 347-6755 for any specific inquiry of services.

Can you do short term senior care?

Yes. Our care is always determined by what you need. Our case managers and licensed nurses will work with you to create a plan of care specific to your individual needs.

Can you care for someone in a facility (hospital, nursing home, or assisted living)?

Yes. We provide services to you wherever you call home.

What if a family member needs to be put in a care facility while receiving AHSI services?

We work with you and the facility to continue providing the services you request.

Do I have to sign a contract locking me into services?

No. AHSI is here to meet your needs, and as your needs change, so will the services you receive. Our service agreement reflects this and flexes to meet changing needs..

How often do I get billed for services?

Billing is done on a bi-weekly basis.

What if I need to speak to someone in the office after business hours?

AHSI office staff is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. When the office is closed, there is an on-call person available to help you.

In the event of a natural disaster or an emergency, is there a plan to provide care?

We have a comprehensive Emergency Plan and work closely with local authorities to ensure our clients are prepared prior to and well cared for during and after a natural disaster or an emergency.

Why would I hire an AHSI caregiver versus a private caregiver for my family?

If you hire privately, you become the employer of the caregiver. The following are just a few of the things you must take into consideration when hiring privately.

These are only some of the challenges to hiring privately. With AHSI, you do not have to worry about any of these issues.

What should I be looking for in a non-medical home care agency?

The best in-home care agencies respond immediately to your home care needs.

How long will it take to get a caregiver?

Based on your needs and requests, we can provide a caregiver as soon as the initial assessment has been completed.

How can I monitor the care that my dad is receiving?

All caregivers make daily log notes and the binder is left at the house. Also, they will be periodically checked by the quality assurance visit by the RN, LPN and the office staff. Much of this involves just observing during visits. Food in the fridge, a clean house, and a clean and happy client are all indications that the care is good.

What happens if a caregiver is unable to show up for a scheduled shift?

If your family’s caregiver is unavailable for any reason, another is made available as soon as possible.

It will probably seem odd to have a stranger around. How long before most people get comfortable with a live-in caregiver?

It usually takes a week or two to get comfortable with a new caregiver. We also reassure families that while this is new for them, it is not new for our professional caregivers. They are accustomed to the situation and know how to make the transition to having someone in a private home as easy as possible. We want our clients to remain as independent as they can for as long as possible, so the caregivers will give as much space as a client needs.

How do you select my caregiver?

All of our caregivers have successfully passed a thorough reference and l criminal background check and are bonded and insured. We match your specific needs and requests to the skills and background of each caregiver to find the ideal companion.

How is the caregiver’s time-off arranged?

Caregivers give advance notice and we always have coverage.

Do we get to interview several caregivers, and choose the one we like best?

Yes, clients may interview prospective caregivers before services are initiated. We carefully screen, hire and manage our caregivers to present you with the right person to meet your needs. Your satisfaction is our highest priority, therefore, if for any reason, a client desires a different caregiver, another one will be provided.

What are the guidelines when the caregiver gets sick?

We have a pool of trained emergency caregivers who are ready to go and this is one of the benefits of using AHSI.

Who is responsible for paying for the caregiver?

AHSI has a great work incentive and great rates. So our caregivers give out the BEST quality service.

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