Well, all’s well that ends well, I guess. We received approval for C to start her job with us midday on Tuesday. What no one told me on Friday, was that both the state offices and the fiscal intermediary were closed for Columbus Day. So, we lost twenty-four hours, but I was able to juggle funding and get C working on Monday in order for us to get two complete shifts in before I had to leave. Fortunately, C is doing a great job already and Lauren really likes her. Crisis averted!
Never one to miss a chance to complain – let me share another facet of the hiring process that caused significant consternation in the last week. I received a certified letter from the fiscal intermediary saying that C was not approved for any position that required driving because of her driver history. There was no explanation of what that meant. When C filled out her driver history form there was no mention of accidents or tickets. So, what does that mean? Did she lie on the form or did the fiscal intermediary make a mistake? I contacted the FI and they said that her history revealed three or more infractions in the past three years, but couldn’t tell me anymore because of privacy issues. I asked C about it and she swore that her history was clear. And….she was very upset. So, upset that she called the FI over, and over, and over again over the course of three days. When they finally called her back, she shared with them that she had, at her own expense, obtained a copy of her driving history. It showed: an accident in which someone drove in to the back of her car, a ticket for her license plate holder partially obscuring the plate, and something about insurance regarding a change from one company to another. Now, how does any of that indicate that she is an unsafe driver? Did they discuss the driver history with her before they made their determination? No. If I had depended on the FIs determination, I may not have hired her because her inability to drive would impact Lauren’s ability to participate in activities.
At a time when it is so difficult to find competent caregivers, it is irresponsible to make inaccurate or inappropriate determinations that could affect the hiring of a perfectly suitable candidate. The FIs handling of this made me question my trust in C and could have cost us a caregiver who is working out beautifully. Just as I want to depend on the background checks and testing that is done to weed out unsuitable hires, I want to depend on those same things not to cost Lauren a perfectly qualified hire.