How do I get started? When you are first assigned your family, it is important to call and introduce yourself. You should also verify the address that was given to you; ask directions if needed and an alternative phone number they can be reached at if necessary.
What do I do if I cannot contact my family? Call the family at different times during the day. Use the alternative phone number if you have collected one. Remember to call the family before the visit to remind them of the date you tentatively set up at the last meeting. Remember to schedule a home visit as early as possible, in case a cancellation or emergency occurs. Someone can also go the family’s home and leave a note, for the family to contact you. If you still have difficulty contacting your family you need to notify the IFH office as soon as possible. (see contact numbers below)
What do I do if my family, or someone in it, is in the hospital? In the past several groups have called one of the family members and asked if it would be ok to see the patient in the hospital or the nursing home. It is almost always OK and we strongly recommend you do this, as the hospitalized person will likely appreciate your visit. You will need to let the IFH office know if you are unable to visit your family due to these circumstances. (see contact numbers below)
What do I do if one of my group members cannot attend a visit? The IFH office needs to be aware of this situation in advance. You will also need to speak to your group leader. It is mandatory that all students on your team attend all of the home visits that are scheduled with your family. (see contact numbers below)
What do I do if my family’s phone number is disconnected? Please contact the IFH office as soon as possible. A group member could also go by the family’s home and leave a note to call. If you still do not receive a response, the IFH office needs to be contacted as soon as possible to try and contact the family. (see contact numbers below)
What do I do if one of the family members dies? In real life sometimes patients die. We have several participants die each year during the course. The IFH office needs to be contacted about this situation. Depending on the circumstances, several options could happen. If other family members wish to continue to participate in the program that is acceptable, a new family could be assigned to you or other options can be discussed if this situation occurs. (see contact numbers below)
What if my family has participated in IFH before? Speak to the family and try to come up with an idea on how your team can help them. You can ask them what previous teams have done in the past. If you cannot come up with an idea together, contact the IFH office and we can help. (see contact numbers below)