By: Jane Hanson | Category: Consumer News | Issue: October 2006
Betty Smith has a heart for helping.
Caring for an elderly or sick relative is one of the most courageous and challenging things a person can do. And the choice between caring for your loved ones at home or in a facility is never an easy one. However, there is now a third option.
Robin’s Caring Arms Healthcare and More, which opened for business in February this year, is a Broken Arrow company staffed by qualified nurses and nurse aids who can offer in-home care for your family members, or enable the current caregiver a much needed break.
As Betty Smith, owner of Robin’s Caring Arms and certified nurse for over 40 years, explains, “Many families prefer to keep relatives at home, rather than in a facility, so they need special care in their home. This is a large part of what we provide.” And according to Smith, this option is often more cost effective than a nursing facility.
According to the Met Life Mature Market Institute, more than 50 million people, provide care for a chronically ill, disabled or aged family member or friend during any given year and caregivers providing care for a family member over the age of 50 routinely underestimate the length of time they will spend as caregivers.
In addition to in-home care, the company will also assist patients on doctors’ visits; they will cook some meals and do light housekeeping chores, party cleanups, office cleaning and more.
Robin’s Caring Arms, named after Smith’s eldest daughter, Robin Adkins, also offers some free services on a voluntary basis. Smith takes a daughter and mother to shop for groceries once a month. Those who think they should qualify for this free assistance may call Robin’s Caring Arms to request and application form.
The service is available to private homes, retirement communities and nursing homes. If a client becomes sick in a facility, staff are often too busy and unable to give the extra one-on-one care the patient needs, so Robin’s Caring Arms professional nurses come in on private duty and give the client the extra attention they need.
The business idea for Robin’s Caring Arms was planted in Smith’s mind when she was working for a company caring for elderly and sick, and her co-workers kept on telling her she should start up her own company. “When I moved here,” says Smith, “I was on the hospice list and responded to calls when a private sitter was needed. I was getting a lot of calls from establishments and I shared them with my colleagues, who kept telling me I should start up my own business.” So in February this year she finally took the plunge and hasn’t looked back since. There has been a tremendous demand for these services.
Robin’s Caring Arms is staffed by a very caring nursing staff: Ashley Paige, Anne Turpen, Racquel Domrique and Alicia Bomboy, who are all certified nurse aids and certified medication aids; and home health aids. Steve King, Lorie Pingrey and Jo Parson are medication aids; Regina Ashley, who is a licensed practice nurse and Dorothy Waters, a companion.
Smith is a caring nurse, mother and grandmother, who moved with husband Mike to Broken Arrow from Wichita, Kansas, eight years ago, and has seven children - five girls and two boys – and, at the last count, eleven precious grandchildren.
The success of the business has been so exciting that a new office is due to open the end of November to teach CNA (certified nurse assistant) classes and home help aid classes. These valuable classes will be open to the general public.