Love, Money, or Flexibility: What Motivates People to Work in Consumer-Directed Home Care?

Source: Candace Howes, Gerontologist, Volume 48, Special Issue I, 2008
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From a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation summary:
Consumer-directed home care, where consumers can hire friends or family to provide home care, is one of the lowest paying types of long-term care jobs. To understand why people take consumer-directed home care jobs, an investigation of the California In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program was undertaken.
Key Findings:
• Approximately 66 percent of workers stated that commitment to consumers was the top motivation for taking their jobs. Flexibility was the second most important reason.
• When made available to county residents who worked part-time jobs, health insurance became the most important reason for taking a consumer-directed home care job.
• Wages played a role in taking and remaining in jobs when they were above $9 an hour and a wage increase had occurred recently. For both family and non-family providers wages and benefits mattered alongside consumer commitment as reasons for staying in jobs.

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