Delaware business targets growing home healthcare needs (video)

(FILE/WHYY)

(FILE/WHYY)

Jackie Lieske, owner and president of Shorecare of Delaware, a home healthcare company, was a young girl when she first thought about owning her own business.

“Shorecare was an inspiration of mine from years ago when my mother got sick. I was 12-years-old when she was diagnosed with MS,” Lieske said. Along with her father, Lieske cared for her mother at home, and that’s where she got her first experience with home healthcare agencies.

She witnessed a revolving door of health aides, who sometimes showed up unprofessionally dressed. The lessons she learned from those experiences shaped how Lieske currently runs her business. “You need to make a family feel comfortable.” Lieske does that by visiting every family prior to scheduling a home healthcare aide. She also tries to make sure aides are assigned to the same clients when possible.

“Consistency is a strong foundation that you need to give the family comfort as well as the person you’re caring for.” In addition, workers are to wear proper business attire, scrubs.

Marcy Wilson Banes of Dover has been helped by Shorecare for past year. She switched to the agency because it allowed her to maintain her independence. “They were very, very personable and because of that, it made it easier to transition from one company to the next company, and it lessened my fear about actually having to go be placed in a facility, because I didn’t want to be in a facility.”

Wilson is like a lot of people who are opting to receive care at home. According to the Commission on Long-Term Care, the number of people needing help with their daily living activities will jump from 12-million to 27-million by 2050. “It’s a growing industry. The baby boomers are hitting the age where they’re going to eventually need care,” said Lieske.

Lieske’s husband, Ben, also pitches in. “I do the day-to-day banking, business stuff, bill paying, and I actually do the van transportation.” He says his wife and her office staff work hard to maintain consistency. We’re not that big but, still, communication and making sure the customers are taken care of is important, so we’re tailoring it to what they want or adjusting to what they need, Ben said.

Shorecare serves Kent, Sussex and New Castle Counties. The company’s main office is located in Dover.

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