ERIC Number: EJ922853
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jul
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Love, Money, or Flexibility: What Motivates People to Work in Consumer-Directed Home Care?
Gerontologist, v48 suppl 1 p46-60 Jul 2008
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of wages and benefits (relative to other jobs available to workers), controlling for personal characteristics, on the recruitment and retention of providers working in a consumer-directed home care program. Design and Methods: I used the results of focus groups to design a survey that was administered to 2,260 workers stratified by ethnicity and working in eight California counties that represented the range of wage and benefit packages available. I used logistic regression to measure the effect of wage and benefit levels, controlling for covariates, on home care workers' stated reason for entering and remaining in the job. Results: Two thirds of respondents reported that commitment to their consumer was the most important reason why they took the job and flexibility was the second most important reason, regardless of wages and benefits and personal characteristics. However, in the county in which very part-time workers were eligible, health insurance was the most important reason for retention. Wage levels above $9 an hour mattered somewhat, especially where the increase was recent. Family providers responded to wage and benefit incentives similarly to non-family providers. Implications: To improve recruitment and retention of consumer-directed home care workers, jobs should be flexible and provide affordable health insurance for part-time workers. The effect of wages suggests that recruitment might be improved with higher wages, but only when they reach the $9 to $10 range (in 2004 dollars). Finally, policy must recognize that family caregivers have financial needs similar to non-family caregivers.
Descriptors: Caregivers, Home Health Aides, Motivation, Wages, Fringe Benefits, Recruitment, Labor Turnover, Health Insurance, Part Time Employment, Surveys
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California