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CAREGIVERS

Communicate with Family Members

Ilya Vakhutinsky

May 11, 2020

Family Communication

When you care for your clients, you are doing so much more than assisting with their personal and household needs. You are a friend, a companion, and a confidant. You are an encourager and a joke-teller. You make a big difference in the health, happiness, and comfort of your clients.

 

But you’re not only important to your clients. You are important to their family members too.

 

Family members can breathe a sigh of relief when they know you are there, providing help and friendship to their loved ones. During these uncertain times with the coronavirus pandemic, you are even more important to family members because you are visiting and checking in on their loved ones while the family members cannot.

 

Now more than ever, it is time to make sure you are communicating well with family members.

 

Know Who to Communicate With

 

Take time to review which family members to communicate with. You can find this information on the care plan. 

 

Communicate Often

 

Your words can go a long way with family members right now, so be sure you are communicating often with them. Try making a quick phone call a part of your daily routine with your client to check in and say hello.

 

Help with Video Chats

 

Video chatting is becoming more and more common right now. Family members are not visiting their loved ones as much in order to follow social distancing recommendations, so seeing their loved ones during a video chat means a lot more today than it did a few months ago.

 

You can work with family members to set up video chat times. Then, help your client start the conversation. If your client needs additional assistance, go ahead and stay for the duration of the call.

 

Try Sending a Note

 

“Snail mail” is extra exciting nowadays. Sit down with your client to compose a few letters to family members each week. You can use fancy stationery or just pieces of notebook paper; what matters is the communication. If your client struggles with fine motor skills or other challenges, you can write the note by jotting down what they want to say. Then, pop it in the note in the mail to brighten someone’s day.

 

Make communicating with families a part of your daily routine with those you serve. Everyone benefits from the extra communication and you are sure to provide some relief and smiles to family members everywhere. 

 

Stay well!

-Ilya

 

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