- Exploring alternatives
When is a Two Person Service needed?
In thinking about whether or not a two person service is needed it is important to explore alternatives and adjust expectations.
Here are some exploratory questions and suggestions for explorations.
The Alternatives checklist allows you to document and print what you have explored.
Is the Participant able to assist more?
- If so, explain to them the need to assist and what the implications are if they do not.
Would the Participant benefit from a Behavioural Management Plan?
- If so, seek assistance from experts if you do not have that skillset in your company.
Does the Participant understand the questions or directions during the service?
- Get someone to interpret if it is a language barrier. Use hand gestures. Use a calming voice.
- Move in smooth, and controlled movements.
Is the Participant fearful or anxious?
- Explore the source of this fear or anxiety and address it as able.
Would the Participant benefit from an Occupational Therapist or Physiotherapist to increase strength or learn new techniques?
- If so, consider recommending a referral to the appropriate therapist
Is the presence of the Carer a help or a hindrance?
- If a hindrance, discuss your concerns with them; advise them of what you need from them; if necessary, consider asking them to exit the room during services.
Are they rushing the pace of the work such that one Support Worker cannot safely perform all that is being asked of them at that rate?
- If so, discuss this with the Carer.
Are they trying to assist but making it more difficult for the Support Worker because they do not understand the correct methods or they are insisting on the Support Worker using incorrect methods?
- If so, educate them on your needs and make a determination if it is safe for the Participant, Carer and Support Worker to have the Carer continue to assist.
- Consider recommending a referral to an Occupational or Physiotherapist to teach the Carer specific mobility techniques that will improve their abilities and safety.
- Some organisations have guidelines of what is and is not appropriate for Carers to assist Support Workers with in order to protect the safety of everyone concerned. Make yourself aware of those in your organisation.
Are there different procedures the Support Worker can use?
- If so, educate the Support Worker on those methods.
Does the Support Worker need to be trained to perform the task safer?
- If so, train the Support Worker.
Is the Support Worker communicating to the Participant in a manner that elicits their cooperation and assistance?
- If not, advise them on the methods you want them to employ.
Are other Support Workers having similar concerns or problems?
- If so, look to how the task can be done differently.
Are there incidents or injuries associated with the task?
- If so, find the root cause and address it.
Does the task require awkward or prolonged postures or repetitive movements?
- If so, consider changing the procedures, equipment or environment for task completion.
Does the task need to be completed too quickly for one Support Worker to do alone?
- If so, consider changing the procedures for task completion or add more time to the service.
Another way of looking at it, does the task take too long for one Support Worker to complete in the allotted time?
- If so, consider changing the procedures for task completion or the allotted time for the service.
If you cannot figure out a better method for task completion, consider a referral to an Occupational Therapist who can conduct a task analysis to advise on methods to make the task safer.
- This may include providing new procedures, prescribing new equipment or recommending home modifications.
Is clutter hampering the Support Worker from performing the task safely?
- If so, negotiate with the Participant for it to be moved.
Is furniture in the way of completing the task?
- If so, negotiate with the Participant for it to be moved.
Do ramps need to be installed to aide assisting the Participant?
- If so, refer to an Occupational Therapist in order to review the need for a ramp.
Are ramps present but too steep for the Support Worker to safely push up or down alone?
- If so, refer to an Occupational Therapist in order to review potential changes to it.
Are bathroom or home modifications needed?
- If so, refer to an Occupational Therapist in order to review the need and make recommendations.
Would equipment make the task such that one Support Worker could safely manage alone?
- If so, refer to an Occupational Therapist in order to review the need and prescribe equipment accordingly.
Is equipment present but in need of repair?
- If so, advise the Participant of the need for it to be repaired and the implications of not doing so.
Is the equipment present but the Participant refuses to use it?
- If so, advise the Participant of the need for it to be used and the implications of not doing so.
- If so, consider recommending an Occupational Therapist or Physiotherapist, depending on the equipment, in order to review the equipment needs.
Is equipment present but heavy, awkward or difficult to use?
- If so, advise the Participant of the need for it to be replaced and the implications of not doing so. Then refer to an Occupational Therapist or Physiotherapist, depending on the equipment, in order to review the need for the right piece of equipment.
Do Workers use the equipment safely?
- If not, train them.
- After training them, get them mentored with a highly skilled co-worker to further learn and demonstrate the proper procedures to use the equipment.
- Make sure they demonstrate how to use the equipment in a manner that is safe for the Participant, themselves and others.
- Make sure they use the equipment up to organisational standards.
Exploring alternatives checklist
Use the following checklist to see if you need to explore further alternatives before deciding on a two person service.
(**) indicates responses where alternatives need further exploration.
Use RESET button to reset the form.
If you complete the form for a particular person you may wish to print it as a record of your thinking.