Caregiver Training Prepares You to Care for a Loved One

09 Dec 2019
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First-time caregivers or new foreign domestic helpers can ease the stress of caring for a senior with caregiver training. Find out more.


If you are new to caregiving, you may feel unprepared about taking care of a senior loved one. What are the different ways to support a senior who needs help in moving around? Can you spot the warning signs of health issues? How do you engage a loved one with dementia?

This is where caregiver training comes in.

In “You Ask, We Answer”, Kate Cham, a Caregiver Training Programme Administrator from Anglo Nurses & Caregivers Singapore, shares more information about the different types and benefits of caregiver training.
 

Alan Ng
Ms Kate Cham

Caregiver Training Programme Administrator - Anglo Nurses & Caregivers Singapore

Kate oversees the day-to-day administration of home-based Caregiver Training programme for families, their new helpers, and pre-training for live-in caregivers engaged through Anglo Nurses. She works with families and registered nurses on care and training needs. To meet the care recipient’s training requirements, Kate is constantly tweaking Anglo Nurses’ training programme based on feedback.

When should we start Caregiver Training?

Kate Cham Caregiver Training Programme Administrator – Anglo Nurses & Caregivers SingaporeAnswer:

Families who have just hired a new helper may consider having the caregiver training conducted within the first month of their helper’s employment.

In situations where there is a change in your elderly loved one’s care needs, you may also wish to consider caregiver training. This is especially crucial if your loved one’s care needs increase, such as from being mobile to needing help to move around, or changing from oral feeding to Nasogastric Tube feeding. Caregivers should undergo formal training for skills like transferring techniques or Nasogastric tube feeding so they can deliver safe and proper care to their loved one.

Caregivers can tap on the annual $200 Caregivers Training Grant (CTG) subsidy to attend approved courses from a list of training providers. There are home-based or classroom-based courses on various topics available.


What are the benefits of Home-based Caregiver Training?

Kate Cham Caregiver Training Programme Administrator – Anglo Nurses & Caregivers SingaporeAnswer:

Newly hired Foreign Domestic Workers (FDW) or family members with no caregiving experience may feel overwhelmed when caring for an elderly for the first time. Home-based caregiver training helps them pick up the essential skills of caregiving in a familiar home environment. Those who have prior training or experience may also find caregiver training helpful as a refresher course.

Home-based caregiver training provides a one-on-one practical experience. The trainer can demonstrate a technique and have the participant return the demonstration, followed by feedback, correction and reinforcement. This customised coaching helps new caregivers overcome their fears and pick up the essential care skills required for day-to-day care confidently.

For new FDWs, the training can be conducted in a language they are comfortable in, such as Bahasa Indonesia, Malay or Tagalog. This may facilitate their understanding, help in their clarification, and motivate them to master their care skills.

Beyond learning the care techniques, Caregivers Training also has these benefits:

  • Pick up proper handling techniques in transferring and positioning the senior: this can help caregivers prevent injuries to their own backs and necks while ensuring the senior’s safety.
  • Catch warning signs of health issues: by learning to detect changes and abnormalities in urine and stool, caregivers may be able to identify possible signs of Urinary Tract Infection. Early detection can help the seniors receive timely treatment.
  • Identify potential hazards: training conducted in a home environment helps the family to identify safety hazards around the house, such as wires sticking out, slippery floors, or cluttered furniture. Keeping the home neat creates a conducive environment for seniors to move around.

What Caregiver Training Courses are there in Singapore?

Kate Cham Caregiver Training Programme Administrator – Anglo Nurses & Caregivers SingaporeAnswer:

There are various caregiver training courses to help caregivers meet the different care needs of seniors they look after. Here is an overview of the types of caregiving courses:

Basic
Day-to-Day Care
Advanced Care Dementia Care
Essential care skills:
  • Showering
  • Toileting
  • Oral feeding
  • Transferring & positioning
Specific to the individual’s care needs:
  • Nasogastric tube feeding
  • Percutaneous endoscopic tube feeding
  • Oral suctioning
  • Tracheal care & suctioning
  • Caring for indwelling catheter
  • Stoma care
  • Basic wound care
  • Giving injections
  • Administering oxygen therapy
Understanding dementia:
  • How to manage and support emotional and behavioural changes
  • How to use communication techniques to engage a person with dementia
  • How to create or modify activities to engage a person with dementia

The caregiver training courses may also include advice on caregivers’ self-care, where you learn how to manage your expectations and look after your well-being. The instructors will also share knowledge and resources on managing and preventing caregiver stress.