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What is included in my care cost?

When I first started looking for care agencies for my mother I was so conflicted by the prices. A lot of care agencies came to do an assessment before they could provide me with a price of the care. Quality Care Time has been very transparent with the care cost from the start; they even did a free 1-hour consultation before having the care assessment. This gave me the opportunity to ask all the questions I had before agreeing to a care assessment.

They do a minimum of 2 hours for every visit to make sure it is cost effective for the care staff. I think it is great how much they care for their staff. It is one of the best assets of the company. All the staff who work there seem to enjoy it and be 100% committed to providing a good service. The more hours you book in a week the higher your discount, so it is worth giving them a call to discuss the hours.

Carers are all trained and developed. What I have noticed with Quality Care Time is that they do not only take on carers who have experience in the field already. They encourage new people to start with them and they provide full training. Their shadowing and training programme is very robust. I have had new carers come and shadow my regular carer 3-4 times. After I will receive a call from the management asking how they got on, what feedback I have on them and general thoughts. There have been occasions when I have had to say that I do not think this person is ready to work alone. This doesn’t mean they give up on the new carer, they allow them to do as much shadowing and training as needed to help them to progress. Once the shadowing and training is completed they are risk assessed. This is where the management comes out to observe them in the field. They sign them off on tasks such as medication, moving and handling, infection control etc. The new carer is not allowed to work alone as a member of staff until they have been signed off. This is why when QCT says that a new member of staff is coming to cover I feel confident that they will be at the level needed to provide the care I need.

Personal protective equipment is always included. Following the risk assessment being completed my mothers care was meant to be starting the following week. I received a PPE drop at the end of the week from a member of Quality Care Time. It included gloves, aprons, masks, and shoe covers. They explained that the amount given has been allocated based on the risk assessment and this would be dropped off monthly to ensure it is consistent. However, there was one week that my mother needed more personal care than usual, and Quality Care Time was more than happy to drop off more.

Insurance is also covered; all the staff are on PAYE and fully covered on QCT insurance. I have asked if a driver can take my mother out in my car however I would need to add them to my car insurance to do this. They are, however, covered to take my mother out on public transport.

Risk assessments and Reviews. Quality Care Time books these in every 3 months unless there has been a change then they come sooner. For example, my mother did have a fall (not during the care delivery) she was taken to hospital where she stayed overnight. When she came home the management from Quality Care Time came round to update the risk assessment and ensure that we had everything we needed to be able to receive a good service. They are so on the ball and actively involved in all aspects of the care.

Record keeping. Quality Care Time has an app called Care control and this gives me access to all of the care being provided to my mother. The carers update everything they do, and I mean everything. The other day I checked the app to see how my mother got on at dinner time and the carers had taken a photo of the dinner they gave at the start and another picture of the amount left. Supporting this is a food and fluid chart with a paragraph on the care given. I feel so reassured that I can see what meals are being given, how and when. I was initially worried that my mother wouldn’t eat the food given or that she would always be given a microwavable meal, but she isn’t. The app allows me to book additional care, send messages to the staff/carers and interact with them on a professional basis.

Physio- My mother has some leg exercises that she has been given to do and I was apprehensive about the carers completing them. The management contacted the Physio and arranged a training session for the regular staff to be shown how to complete them in the care calls. They videoed each exercise and put it on the app for future reference. They also printed the exercises off, laminated them and pinned them to the wall.

Nothing is too much work for the whole team; they really are just so genuine and eager to help.

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