Right at Home was founded by Allen Hager. For many years, Allen worked in healthcare as a hospital administrator. While in the hospital environment, he watched many of his patients – especially seniors – leave the facility and return home, but not necessarily return to health. Once home, a lot of his former patients were unable to care for themselves.
Allen knew that with a little help, most of these people could lead healthy, happy lives in their own homes. But he also knew that there were very few companies that offered this kind of help. Allen didn't just jump in and start a franchising company, however.
First, he talked to dozens of families to understand the different kinds of challenges they faced and what kind of care would help. Then he became a certified nursing assistant so he could experience the needs of people who were still living in their home but who needed some professional assistance.
In 1995, Allen started Right at Home in Omaha, Nebraska. Five years later, he started branching into other regions of the country by carefully selecting franchisees who shared his passion for caring for those in their community.
Right at Home now has more than 500 locations that serve tens of thousands of clients across the United States and internationally.
Maybe you’ve noticed Mom and Dad’s house starting to decline: counters are dirty, shelves undusted. Or perhaps your sister’s health is waning; she’s growing older and forgets to take her medications. Whatever the signs, you’re beginning to wonder if your loved one needs help around the house. Companionship care and homemaking offer just that: nonclinical assistance for those who need it, without leaving the comfort of home.
From doing the laundry and taking out the garbage to reading out loud or playing cards, professionals in companionship care and homemaking serve as another body within the home. They’re available to help remind patients when to take their medications, keep up around the house and even drive someone to a hair appointment. Both services differ slightly in how they work.
The purpose of companionship care is to offer company and friendship. Companions may help with certain household chores, such as laying out towels before a shower, but their primary purpose is to spend time with the patient. Grown children may want to hire companions to keep an eye on their aging parents, for example. Some of the services offered by companionship care include:
- Reading a book aloud
- Playing games
- Accompanying the patient for a walk outside
- Letter writing
- Monitoring the home
Think of homemaking as an addition to companionship care. With a homemaker, patients will receive all the benefits of a companion—such as transportation—but with added bonuses. Homemaking extends to include tasks such as cooking, cleaning and even grocery shopping. Some of the services offered by homemaking include:
- Taking out the garbage
- Light housekeeping
- Respite care
Cheaper Than Home Health Aides
Companionship care and homemaking do not include personal, hands-on care. For example, companions cannot help patients bathe or take their medications. Instead, they can prepare the bath and remind patients to take their medications. Most states require additional licensing for personal, hands-on care.
Therefore, hiring companions or homemakers will cost less than hiring a home health aide, who undergoes additional training and needs a state license to provide hands-on care. The difference in cost can run $4-5 less per hour.
Benefits of Companionship Care and Homemaking
From taking away loneliness to ensuring proper nutrition, companionship care and homemaking have many benefits for patients. If you suspect your loved one isn’t eating well, for example, having a homemaker available to cook nutritious meals can turn around your family member’s health.
Here are just a few of the benefits these services offer:
- Mental (cognitive) stimulation
- Increased mobility due to transportation services
- Improvement in health, both physical and mental
- Safety supervision
We Can Help
When you call Right at Home, one of their professionals will visit your loved one’s house and provide a free assessment to determine your needs. Their professionals are very flexible and will partner with your family to determine the best schedule for companionship care and homemaking visits.