Any list of caregiver duties and responsibilities will obviously vary from patient-to-patient based upon the individual needs of that specific patient.
It will also vary based upon the location of the patient…are they at home, in a facility, etc…
But regardless, there are always some specific responsibilities for the caregiver, and below I will detail them…
Assisting With The ADL’s
The ADL’s are the Activities for Daily Living, and they are…
Someone’s ability to perform these functions, or their lack of ability to perform such functions, is the reason that they are under the care of a caregiver. And the points are fairly self-explanatory.
I wrote about the 6 ADL’s here and it is the duty of a caregiver to make sure that someone under their care can safely perform these functions, or that the caregiver is the one helping their patient with these ADL’s.
Setting up a care plan and making sure it is followed is another of the caregiver duties that must be performed. I have previously written about my own experience with a care plan for my mother while she was a resident of a nursing home.
You can read that post here and it will explain not only the process of setting up a care plan but also how you can watch out for your loved one in the process of setting up a care plan.
Assisting With Medical Needs
In most instances, a caregiver duties from a medical standpoint are limited to administering medication, keeping track of medication and making sure that instructions of doctor’s is being followed
This especially applies if as a caregiver you are taking care of your loved one at home. If you are a professional caregiver in a facility you may have expanded caregiver duties.
By meals, I am referring to not only meal prep, but the grocery shopping to get the food as well as feeding those who are infirm or are suffering from aspiration issues.
This is one of the caregiver duties, especially if you are caring for someone at home. And by housekeeping I mean light housework such as vacuuming, dusting, etc…
And I should mention laundry as well. This is especially important when you consider the amount of time many of those who are infirm spend in bed. To prevent bedsores and other issues the sheets need to be changed and the laundry done.
Transfer and Transport
Transferring is one of the 6 ADL’s I mentioned earlier, and is a caregiver duty if the person you are caring for is immobile enough where they cannot transfer in and out of bed, a chair, a passenger car seat, etc…
Transport is actually taking them to and from medical appointment and errands.
Note: if you are caring for someone in their home and they are not a relative (you are being paid by the family or a home health care agency) you may need special insurance to cover you if you are transporting the person you are caring for in your own car.
Of all of the caregiver duties, this might be the one that is the most important…Companionship. Just being there for someone. Many seniors lose their mobility as they age and as a result become reclusive and don’t get out into public.
You, by being someone to talk to and someone for them to see on a daily basis, become one of the most important people in their lives. And all you really need to do is talk to them.