As a home health aide or HHA, you need to provide exceptional care for your patients. Plus, you must hold yourself to a high moral standard. The National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC)’s Code of Ethics outlines these ethical guidelines for home health aides.
Ethical Guidelines Home Health Aides Should Follow:
Acknowledge Patient Rights
Although they are dependent on others, your patients still have rights. These rights include the right to choose care providers, the right to refuse treatment, the right to privacy, and more. Make sure to familiarize both yourself and your patients with this list of rights. And even if you disagree with an individual’s decision, be willing to honor their wishes.
Provide the Best Possible Care
According to NAHC, “the principal objective of home care and hospice agencies is to provide the best possible service to patients.” Sometimes you or your agency will be able to provide the best possible services. However, in other cases, another agency or individual may be a better choice. Always put the needs of your patients before the needs of yourself or your company.
Caregivers often are in situations where they could take advantage of a patient financially. The NAHC Code of Ethics expects agencies and individuals to bill fairly. This means only charging for services provided and hours worked as well as avoiding unnecessary expenses. Kickbacks and payoffs are strictly prohibited.
Agencies and individuals have a responsibility to represent themselves truthfully. They should not advertise benefits they cannot provide, nor should they misrepresent pricing. Of course, most HHA’s aren’t involved with creating their company’s marketing materials. Nevertheless, they need to be prepared to accurately describe the services and the cost of the services they provide.
Know the Rules
The members of the National Association for Home Care and Hospice must work together to achieve overreaching goals. Even as an individual provider, you should read and occasionally review the NAHC Code of Ethics. Remember, these rules and regulations protect not only patients but also YOU as a healthcare worker. For example, NAHC requires fair pay, equitable hiring practices and ongoing training for all staff.
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