Frequently Asked Questions
How long have you been in business?
Right at Home Boston Southwest opened in July 2007. It is independently owned and operated by the Pellegrine Family. The office is located in Foxboro, MA, with our territory covering from Boston to Fall River.
What kind of home care services do you provide?
Right at Home Boston Southwest provides private pay, in-home companion care, Personal Care and Skilled Nursing Care to adults living in Norfolk County, Lower Suffolk County and Bristol County.
Where do you provide services?
Right at Home provides services to adults in Norfolk County, Lower Suffolk County and Bristol County. Our office is located in Foxboro, MA, but our caregivers are located in many towns Southwest of Boston, including many in Boston.
Right at Home provides services wherever a client calls home. It may be their home, in an assisted living community, a skilled nursing facility or a hospital.
When can services be provided?
Right at Home can customize the schedule to suit your loved one’s needs. It can be as little as 6 hours per week up to 24 hours a day, 7 days per week. Our team can make recommendations, but the ultimate decision is up to the client and their family. Right at Home has on-call supervisors available when the office isn’t open, whether nights, weekends or holidays so if a situation ever arises that you find yourself in need of care, you can rest assured that our team will be there.
Are your caregivers your employees? Are they insured and bonded?
Yes, Yes, and Yes. All of our caregivers are Right at Home employees and are covered under our general liability and workers compensation insurance. In order to ensure we are hiring well qualified and trustworthy caregivers, we provide extensive background checks and screenings before they become employees. Each caregiver goes through a process which includes a competency exam, a criminal background check, a driving record check, a sex offender registry check, a nurse aide registry check, a social security number screening as well as a check of the Office of Inspector General to ensure caregiver hasn’t been involved in Medicare Fraud.
Once a caregiver is hired, each goes through an in-depth orientation, which includes a skills check with one of our nurses and those nurses provide supervision in the form of supervisory visits. We also offer additional training for our caregivers to ensure up-to-date knowledge
Will my family member always receive care from the same caregiver?
Our goal is to establish a long-term caregiving relationship with your loved one. We begin by matching skills and personalities. If your family member requests a different caregiver, we will search for a match until your family member is happy. We understand that not every caregiver is a fit with every client and we want to ensure that we find the best fit. Strong rapport and trust is vital to making your home care experience successful.
If your loved one receives care for many hours in a day or different times throughout the day, it will most likely result in multiple caregivers during a given week.
Do I have a choice of who comes to my home?
Yes. We encourage your involvement in the decision-making process. The more information we receive from you, the more effective our proprietary screening and selection system will work. You can rest assured that we will do our best to take the guesswork out of matching the right caregiver to you and your family. However, we want you to be satisfied, so we will try to accommodate any requests you have for a change in caregiver (as allowed by law).
Please understand we do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, or any other basis of discrimination prohibited by law.
What if I don’t think my caregiver is a good fit?
Right at Home will make every attempt to find the “perfect” caregiver for your loved one for the first shift. We will match client to caregiver based on the information we have received.
If for some reason, it is not a good fit, we will either replace the caregiver or work with the caregiver to ensure you are happy with them. The choice is yours! It is very important to us that your loved one is comfortable with the care being provided and we totally understand that every caregiver is not a perfect match to every client. Do not ever hesitate to let us know!
Can Right at Home help with medications?
There are very specific laws and regulations regarding medication administration and Right at Home follows all Massachusetts Board of Nursing Regulations. Contact us today to determine if we can provide the exact service that will best support your medication needs.
In Massachusetts, our aides are allowed to do medication reminders and hand-over-hand assists with medication. They are not allowed to fill med cassettes or dose out any medications. We do have nurses on staff that can assist with these.
Can I change or discontinue the services my love one receives?
You can change the number of hours or the type of services we provide to your loved one whenever it’s necessary. We understand the care situation can change very quickly, so we try to be as flexible as possible with your loved one’s care. We do ask for as much notice as possible (at least 24 hour notice), but also recognize that emergencies happen! You are never bound to a long-term contract, so you may discontinue your relationship with Right at Home at your discretion.
How can I verify a shift was completed?
Right at Home Boston Southwest uses several tools to ensure shifts are completed. Our caregivers use a telephony system in which they call an 800 number to clock in and out via the client’s telephone. If the client’s phone is not working (or they are on the phone), the caregiver can clock in on a CC Go App from their cell phone, and if those forms of recording time worked, the caregivers will fill out a hand written time card. Our office is also notified within 15 minutes if the caregiver did not clock in, which gives us the ability to find out where the caregiver is and let your loved one know as soon as possible. In any way that a caregiver records the beginning and the end of a shift, the caregiver must be at the client's home for the system to work. A caregiver cannot clock in or out from their own home, or anywhere outside of a client's home.
Do I need a physician’s authorization for your services?
No. You do not need pre-authorization, pre-qualification, certification or even a prescription for Right at Home’s services. You choose the services you want, when to start the services, and how often those services are used. If you are using a long-term care policy, they may have certain stipulations that apply.
What are the costs of home care services?
Every family we serve will receive a custom care plan specific to their needs and budget. Several factors will determine the exact cost:
- Number of hours per week
- Level of services provided
- Relationship with other service providers
Our services are billed on an hourly basis, which will make it easy to create a custom care plan for you. To discuss the exact rates for the services you need, please contact our office.
Why is homecare so expensive? I can get it cheaper if I go through a registry or hiring someone privately.
Absolutely! Hiring a caregiver through a registry or privately is less expensive, but there are risks. If you are aware of the risks, you can make an informed decision regarding what is right for you and your loved one. Some of the benefits of using a private home care agency, such as Right at Home, are listed below:
- Agencies must adhere to the governing employment laws which include wages, overtime, sick time, worker’s comp, time & travel, unemployment and domestic violence leave policies. Right at Home’s caregivers are our employees and Right at Home is responsible for payroll tax withholding and reporting. If you hire an independent contractor and give them a schedule, list of duties and supplies, you are in essence forming an employer-employee relationship and these become YOUR responsibility.
- Right at Home provides consistent day-to-day oversight of care. Right at Home nurses provide supervision and support to our caregivers. Right at Home nurses are able to adjust the plan of care to ensure your loved one is receiving care based on their needs. Registries do not provide day-to-day oversight which opens the client to the possibility of incompetence, neglect, abuse.
- Right at Home has liability insurance for our caregivers. If a caregiver is not employed by an agency, the client is exposed to potential damages and financial losses.
- Backup care – a registry will not provide backup in the event of an absence of the regularly scheduled caregiver. Right at Home has a large pool of caregivers to provide backup care when a regular caregiver is ill, on vacation or experiences an emergency.
- Workers’ Comp – Home care agencies are required to provide workers’ compensation in the event a caregiver sustains a work-related injury. Musculoskeletal injuries are the most common injury in homecare and occur from moving, repositioning and manual lifting of patients. According to the CDC, nursing / home health aides have the highest rate of back injuries (18.8%). Without worker’s comp insurance, these injuries could become your financial issue. You would need to check with your homeowner’s insurance to see if they would be covered at your home while working for you.
Are home care services covered by insurance or Medicare?
While Medicare will provide in-home skilled services, such as skilled nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy or wound care, they do not currently pay for hourly personal care or companion care services that Right at Home provides.
Long-Term Care Insurance will typically reimburse for the services provided by Right at Home. We can assist you with information on how to get reimbursed from your provider.
We also support programs like the Veteran’s Aide and Attendance Program, which is an additional pension benefit paid directly to Veteran’s and/or surviving spouses who require our services.
Do I pay the caregiver directly?
No. You (or an authorized representative) will receive a weekly invoice for services received. Right at Home will manage all employee payroll, tax and benefit programs so you never have to pay the caregivers directly.
One of the reasons for choosing an agency is to make it easier for you and your family. We take the responsibility of being the employer so you don’t have to worry about payroll taxes, worker’s comp and liability insurance
Does Right at Home follow Federal and State Labor and Wage guidelines?
Right at Home complies with all Labor and Wage guidelines. We pay competitive wages, training pay, time and travel, overtime, as well as sick pay.
Why do I have to pay a service deposit?
Each client pays a fully refundable service deposit based on the weekly cost of the service plan and the payment option chosen. The amount of the service deposit is equal to 2 weeks of service based on the plan chosen and amount of hours. If paying by ACH/EFT, a one week service deposit is required.
The service deposit is not a prepayment of services. You will still be invoiced weekly with the expectation of payment in accordance with the chosen payment option. The service deposit is held (in a non-interest bearing) account until services are terminated and invoices are paid in full. The service deposit is based upon the hours chosen for your loved one. If at any point, the service level permanently changes to 20% or more above the current levels, a new service agreement will need to be signed and an increased service deposit collected.
We require the service deposit to equal the first two weeks of service and to ensure all payments are paid in full at the time of the service termination.
What happens if I need to cancel a visit?
For (pre) planned cancellations in service, a 24 hour notice is required, however more notice is appreciated. This will give us the opportunity to find the assigned caregiver alternate work. Failure to provide notice will result in client being billed for the full shift (as Right at Home will pay the caregiver for the shift).
How does Right at Home monitor quality of services?
Right at Home has nurses out in the field seven days a week. Our nurses visit our clients and caregivers AT LEAST every 90 days. Usually it is monthly. Our nurses conduct unannounced supervisory visits on the caregivers. Nurses also ask the clients how well the care is meeting their needs. They are able to adjust the care plan as needed.
Right at Home has also engaged an independent third party agency to provide a quality management system specific to home care. The organization is called Home Care Pulse (HCP) and the Right at Home program is called RightPulse.
RightPulse interviews 5% of our clients AND caregivers monthly.
What are Right at Home’s training requirements?
Right at Home requires our caregivers to complete 12 hours of training per year (6 for homemakers). We require monthly training and offer it in numerous ways. Caregivers can join one of our in-house classes taught by one of our nurses, stop by the office to pick up a pre-printed in-service topic (complete with a quiz) or join our Right at Home University which offers many different topics to chose from.
Our training lab includes items that may be used in a client’s home such as a hospital bed, Hoyer lift, gait belt, blood pressure cuffs, glucometers (many different styles), wheel chairs, walkers, as well as many other items.
What are the hiring practices of Right at Home?
All of our caregivers undergo a rigorous hiring process. When caregivers are interviewed, they must complete a written competency exam. Right at Home then performs complete background checks on all potential employees. Our comprehensive background check process includes the following: Nurse’s Aide Registry, Massachusetts Criminal Offender Record (CORI), The Office of Inspector General (which checks for Medicare fraud), After these checks are complete, we then use CHECKR National Background Check which runs a County Criminal Background Search and National Criminal Database Search, A Federal Criminal Background Search, The Sex Offender Registry, A Social Security Number Trace, A Global Watchlist Search and a DMV report.
Once this comes back, we run an E-Verify screening with verifies employment eligibility and ensures the person being hired is authorized to work in the United States. Right at Home also verifies two (2) professional references.
If an applicant passes our screening process and is hired, they attend a five hour orientation which is taught by one of our nurses. They must also demonstrate competency on Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL’s) in our training lab before ever going to a client’s home.
How is the privacy of my personal information maintained?
Right at Home adheres to all applicable federal and state guidelines related to privacy of personal and healthcare information. This begins once we have a formal services agreement, before a caregiver even comes to your family member's home. The written services agreement stipulates the exact restrictions on the use of your information.
Your information is never sold to a third party under any circumstances. In fact, only the office personnel, nurses and caregivers who are directly involved in your services will have access to information related to care of your loved one.
What makes you different from any other agency?
What makes Right at Home different from other agencies? It is RightCare! RightCare is our commitment to you to provide an exceptional customer experience through four distinct principles – RightPeople, RightServices, RightApproach, and RightMission. Simply put, our focus is the right people doing the right things, the right way for the right reason.
Right at Home strives to be the best agency in the area. We are one of the few agencies around that have nurses (RN’s and LPN’s) on staff. Our nurses are out in the field daily to make sure things are running smoothly for both our clients and our caregivers. One of our owners (Sandy) is a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and a certified Dementia Practitioner and the other (Jim) is a Certified Senior Advisor.
Right at Home takes great pride in our caregivers. We work with them as a team by providing support and training. When caregivers are respected and given the tools to succeed, it goes a long way towards retention. This, in turn, results in consistency of care for your loved one.
Right at Home has also partnered with Harvard Medical School and ClearCare to do everything we can to reduce hospitalizations for your loved one. Our caregivers are trained to recognize changes in your loved one and report to the office. Our staff will follow up with the caregiver and/or client to determine if the client needs to be monitored by our nurse or see their doctor. Our hope is that by recognizing slight changes, we are able to handle issues before they become problems and the client needs to be hospitalized.
Right at Home services seem like a good choice; what’s the next step?
Give us a call or send us a message. We will arrange a time to visit you, your family and/or any authorized representative to fully discuss your particular home care situation and how Right at Home might help.
Together, we can go over the care your family needs and the care we provide. We will answer all of your questions regarding in-home care services and costs. You are under no obligation - this is a purely informative meeting. If you decide to use the services of Right at Home Boston Southwest, we will begin putting together your Custom Care Plan and matching your loved one with the right caregiver. We can usually begin care within a few days, but will work with you to determine the best time to start. If you are choosing personal care, a nurse will come out to do a full assessment and develop the plan of care for the aides to follow.