With so much bad press around unqualified caregivers circulating the media today, I wanted to highlight a shining example of the caregiving role done right. On June 29, 2012 Nina Hobbs, only 22, was selected out of 3,000 caregivers across 60 locations and presented with the Caregiver of the Year Award by leading senior care company, Home Care Assistance.
Not only is she the most requested caregiver in Charleston, but Nina plans to join the US Marine Corps as an officer candidate this coming October and is considering the possibility of becoming a registered nurse in the armed services. Nina is a graduate from the University of North Carolina and has a bachelor’s degree in psychology in addition to her CNA license. This has helped her when working with clients to better tune into their needs, whether expressed outwardly or through context clues. Nina also has intimate knowledge of the proper techniques utilized in caring for clients and is often an example of how our other caregivers are expected to care for our clients.
Unfortunately caregivers like Nina are few and far between. According to a recent study out of the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, it’s a standard practice for many agencies to recruit directly off community posting sties, such as Craigslist, and place these “caregivers” in the homes of older adults with dementia without conducting
any sort of criminal background checks or requiring any previous experience or training. Especially upsetting was the finding that agencies sometimes fabricate the background and experience of their caregivers. Key findings of the study include the fact that (1) only 55% of agencies did a criminal background check of the caregivers they placed into the homes of their clients and (2) 66% of agencies did not conduct home visits to check on
caregiver performance and client status.
In light of the negativity surrounding professional caregivers, we want to showcase Nina as an example of what clients should expect when hiring a caregiver from a reputable agency. She also serves as a model for aspiring caregivers. According to one client, Bob Musso, “Nina has that ability to relate one-on-one with you and make you feel like family. There’s no way you can be in a bad mood around her and that’s the best medicine available.”
Visit Nina’s Story for more information.