February 5, 2018
10 Things

10 Things I Know About ... Maintaining productivity as employees care for loved ones

Lori Poisson is director of RightCare Solutions for Right at Home, a Westborough private-duty, in-home care and assistance company. Email her at rightcare@rahewc.com.

10) Establish onsite support groups to help employees manage the stress, guilt and frustration often accompanying caregiving.

9) Institute a flex-work policy to address time-off and work-from-home options so employees can meet their caregiving responsibilities as well as those of their job.

8) Encourage employees to take advantage of your workplace wellness program and/or EAP (employee assistance program) to ensure they can access tools to help them with the emotional and physical stress.

7) Offer a benefit for home care or other associated costs. Offsetting even a small portion of the costs can make a big difference to a stressed employee/caregiver.

6) Train HR personnel, managers and department heads in caregiving issues and arm them with resources to share accordingly.

5) Consult a geriatric care manager to provide guidance to working caregivers to identify appropriate housing, financial, health, legal and support resources.

4) Suggest employees hire direct care staff to assist with caregiving during the workday.

3) Launch a workplace seminar series featuring industry experts who offer insight into such topics as work-life balance; financial and legal issues; navigating the healthcare and insurance mazes; and options for care.

2) Utilize the local senior center. Senior centers offer a wide variety of programming for older adults, and many offer Meals on Wheels, transportation, supportive services and socialization opportunities.

1) Communicate. Let your employees know you will do what you can to accommodate their caregiving-related requests; they should feel comfortable addressing their needs to you, as an employer; and you empathize with them.


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