As a part of a blog challenge I am doing we were asked today to write about how we spend our weekends regarding work. Do we blog/work on the weekend, or do we take the weekends off?
Hopefully, the days will come when we take the weekends off, but in the paid home healthcare business if you are a caregiver working weekends may be a part of the plan. You don't have to work every weekend though.
In Healthcare like the restaurant business for example there is always work on the weekends. People have to eat, people do get ill, and people certainly age. People who are unable to help themselves do need round the clock care, so the weekends although hard to staff is always open for business in paid home healthcare. We work on the weekends for numerous reasons but mostly for the following reasons:
People need round the clock care
The work is mostly but not always really long hours. It may involve a twelve hour shift. You start whenever you are most needed, and you chose what shifts fit your preference. So you can work from 7am to 7pm, from 8am - 8pm, or 9am to 9pm and so on. The shifts can also be shorter time periods. The night shifts are mostly twelve hour shifts, and replace the day caregiver at the end of their twelve hour shift.
Usually when you are a paid day home health caregiver you don't also work the night shift. When someone such as a dementia patient needs round the clock care your will have your relief of another caregiver after your twelve hours is completed.
For those clients who only need four hours or eight you may do one or two shifts per day as you chose, and if there is available work with those hours. Here is where you also make up your hours if you work another job, you are a student, or you chose only weekend work.
It's not a lucrative field so you will need additional hours for some sort of decent earned living.
The weekends are not easy to staff
Some people absolutely will not work the weekend shifts. So this results in more availability for those who are needing to work weekends, or those who need more hours.
The hardest days to staff is Sundays. You do not have to work every Sunday, but if you prefer just weekends as some people do then there is your chance.
Weekend work is sometimes quieter and some clients will expect to be taken to church. If you do not share their faith, you can always wait outside. Many assisted living facilities provide rides to church for their residents and caregivers.
One problem on the weekends is when a caregiver cannot for some reason work their agreed to weekend shift. These 'call offs' usually come at the last minute. So caregivers who are off will be asked if they can fill a shift.
Keeping the normalcy of a client's lifestyle
The private caregiver working in the healthcare business and the home health care companies which supply the workers all have one thing in common. They are not only in the business to make a salary, and in the case of the companies to make a profit, but they want to keep the client's lifestyle as normal as possible.
We usually work with the same client on the same same day(s) each week. That means every Saturday you may work with your 100 year old client and she, or he will look forward to seeing that home health caregiver. You the caregiver also look forward to seeing your client again after the few days that have passed.
Paid home health caregiving does not take holidays especially on the weekends because our clients need us and we need them. Care giving to the elderly or anyone in need is rewarding work.
Ruth Y. Webster