Packing a bag and heading to work is a little different for home health care workers. Some of the items you bring will be necessary to perform your job while others may be used to reduce stress or enhance the day for both you and your client.
As a home health care worker, it’s always better to be over prepared. You may head to the client’s home hauling an overstuffed bag, but you’ll be thankful to have everything you could possibly need that day. The mood or state of the client and their loved ones can impact your client’s health as well as your job, so take extra care when packing to be as prepared as possible for any scenario.
Preparing for the Day
Your job has a significant impact on someone’s life, so it’s important to take care of yourself and to spend time mentally warming up for the day ahead. Waking up late will make you and the client stressed. Be sure to set your alarm early enough so that you can ease into the day. Treat yourself to a nourishing breakfast and plenty of water before heading to the client’s home. The better you feel heading into the day, the better impact you will have on the client.
Get as much ready the night before as possible to decrease stress in the morning. Pick out your outfit, prepare your lunch, or pack your bag. You may even want to download music or podcasts to have ready for any downtime at work.
Be absolutely sure that you have the client’s emergency contact information saved in your phone. You should also have an emergency contact for yourself and the number of your nursing supervisor. If you’re managing a difficult medication schedule for the client, you may even want to schedule alarms in your phone to ensure that no medications are missed.
Daily Packing List
Be sure to have these with you every day for the client’s care or to reach out for help if necessary. While the client’s medical binder remains at the client’s residence, you should still be sure to bring the following items:
- Phone Charger
- Any Necessary Medical Instruments or Devices
- Writing Utensils
- Personal Essentials (Keys, Wallet, Etc.)
In order to care for others, you need to take care of yourself first. Bring items that will help you feel comfortable throughout the day.
- Water Bottle
- Hand Sanitizer and Lotion
- Light Blanket or Shawl
Doing activities with the client can be relaxing and fun. Whether the client is an adult or child, focusing on an activity can elevate their mood and overall wellbeing.
- Coloring Books and Crayons
- Jigsaw Puzzles
Not every day as a home health care worker is predictable. As you transition into providing care for a new family, it’s especially important to pack each day to be as prepared as possible for anything. As you become more comfortable with the home you are working in and learn more about the client, you may find that you need to add certain items to your daily packing list and others can be left at home.
It’s okay if all you bring each day are the necessary items, but you may find that bringing some extras to entertain or calm the client will not only elevate their mood but allow you to perform your job better overall.