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  • Writer's pictureZena

Time Off

Just when you finally found a good caregiver, you suddenly realize that you need to find another one to provide relief for your primary caregiver. If only they can work straight 7 days/week…WAIT! They’re human, just like us! Can’t do that…so now what? A home health care agency sells you the reassurance point that shift changes and coverage is their job. Yet all we hear at our agency is that the caregivers don’t show up! Why is that?

If you made $10 per day and had to pay train, bus and taxi fares to get to your job for a four-hour shift, would you do it consistently? You might, but chances are that you will seek a better paying job shortly thereafter. The reality is that people will naturally seek jobs that are economically meaningful. $10 to $12/hour is not meaningful, and by the end of this year, the minimum wage in New York City will be $15 per hour in companies that have more than 10 employees. If you need a live-in, how does this calculate? The law for a live-in is that an 8-hour day equals one live-in day, meaning that the caregiver does no have to work more than 8 hours in a 24-hour period, and is entitled to at least 8 hours of sleep. Overtime pay is mandatory after 40 hours, so agencies try to replace the weekday caregiver with a separate caregiver for the weekend to keep costs low. There’s additional points to the labor law that an employer must legally adhere to, and all these laws must be absorbed and equated to an amount that the consumer can afford. A companion placed as an employee of the household has different influencing drivers. While all the same labor rules apply, the caregiver and the family have more to work with because much of the overhead expenses that an agency must bear are not present in a direct employee-employer relationship. This also allows one to be able to afford a better paid caregiver for less than an agency’s full-service price. Managing shift changes is much easier with the help of a placement service like ICONNEL. Although we are legally limited to the placement of homemakers and housekeepers, we do provide personnel with substantial capabilities beyond their hired capacity. Thus, time-off for your main caregiver is not a problem with resource managers like ICONNEL who help ease the pain of finding and screening the right person.

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