Depending on who you ask, you may get different answers. Most consumers are told to ask if the people who are working for a home health care agency are bonded, however they have no idea what that actually means. Bonding means that if a person steals from you while working in your home, the bond will re-pay you for what ever is stolen.
There are several problems that consumers need to be aware of. First of all, in order for the bond to actually pay for damages, a person must be convicted of theft. That means the home owner must be willing to press charges and have the accused thief arrested. Many seniors are reluctant to do this as they are afraid of the repercussions.
It is often hard to prove that a person has stolen anything unless you actually catch them in the act.
Consumers need to see how much the bond that an agency purchases covers. Some bonds may only be for a few thousand dollars and not large enough to cover a major theft.
The best thing for consumers is to work with a reputable agency that does a very thorough screening. While there is no guarantee that even the most stringent screening process produces 100% honest people, it is certainly better than using a service that has a loose screening system. As the old saying goes “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”
Obviously hiring a person who is bonded does add an additional layer of security, but choosing a reputable service that has proven experience in screening candidates is the best insurance you can get.