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Types of Caregivers

The Different Ways that People Give Back

Though all caregivers have the desire to help others in common, sometimes the similarities start and stop there. There are a wide variety of caregiver roles covering a wide range of industries. In the non-medical care industry alone, there are several types of caregivers. At Griswold Home Care, the primary caregiver focus is on providing non-medical services to the elderly, sick, injured and disabled in the comfort of their homes.

The most common type of caregiver is the family caregiver: someone who takes care of a family member without pay. The other types are professional, independent, private, informal, and volunteer caregivers. Below we have brief descriptions of each to give you an idea of what these jobs are like and what their daily responsibilities entail.

Family Caregiver

A family caregiver is a relative who provides emotional, financial, nursing, social, homemaking, and other services on a daily or intermittent basis for an ill or disabled loved one at home. Most family caregivers volunteer their time, without pay, to help with the care needs of a loved one.

Professional Caregiver

A professional caregiver is hired to provide care for a care recipient. These caregivers can provide medical or non-medical care in the home or a facility. Their career is to assist another person in a way that enables them to live as independently as possible. Professional caregivers work for an agency, and the care recipient hires the agency to provide care.

Independent Caregiver

The term independent caregiver is commonly used to describe a home care professional who does not work for an agency. An independent caregiver is employed directly by the family. There is no intermediary agency between the care recipient and the caregiver.

Private Duty Caregiver

A private duty caregiver can provide a broad range of services, from medical and nursing care to bill paying and transportation services. Their goal is to provide whatever the senior and their family needs for them to remain independent in their own homes. These caregivers can work for 3rd party agencies or independently.

Informal Caregiver

An informal caregiver, typically a family friend or neighbor, provides care, typically unpaid, to someone with whom they have a personal relationship. This differs slightly from a family caregiver in that an informal caregiver is typically not directly related to the care recipient.

Volunteer Caregiver

A volunteer caregiver usually works in either respite or hospice care. A volunteer provides breaks for someone who is caring for an adult with a disability, chronic illness, or frailty. They provide non-medical companionship, supervision, and a friendly new face for a person with special needs so that the caregiver has some time away.

A volunteer is commonly perceived by hospice care recipients and families as ordinary members of their local community. This relationship provides a feeling of normality for them, as well as their families and friends.

Are you in need of more resources to provide care for a client or loved one? Access our free library of articles and videos to help you provide care through our Family Learning Center.

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