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Caregiver regulations

Letter to editor:

There is no current regulation in Alabama that requires care giver entities to be licensed and bonded. No background checks, MVR reports, work history, or credentials of the employees, are required for this type of entity to operate in the state. “Fly by night” franchises are popping up all over the state, like unwanted ads on the Internet. I think it’s time for our legislators in Montgomery to address this and change this status.

Currently, if you have a pulse, these entities can employ anyone to provide this service. That means, possibly someone convicted of a crime, someone with a bad MVR, someone that is in a financial bind or someone with an alcohol or drug habit, can enter your aged parents home and have carte blanche free access to anything and everything.

Would you want someone that has multiple driving violations to drive your parent(s) around? Would you want someone with a criminal background to have access to personal information of your parents? Would you want someone stealing your parent’s medicine? Would you want someone not medically trained and qualified to look after your parents?

Is someone new showing up on a regular basis? Inquire with the entity about their turn over rate. Ask them to provide a complete background check. If they refuse, this should set off bells and whistles. Contact the Better Business Bureau. See how they stand with the BBB. Call DHR and ask for a list of reputable agencies.

A “fly by night” agency will do everything to discourage you in your attempt to gain info about who is entering your parent’s home. They will give all types of excuses whereas you are not allowed this type of information, which is 100 percent wrong. You have every right to know who is looking after your parents. A reputable agency will have no problem providing information on their employees.

Mike Dowdy