Arizona Institute for Public Life

VALLEY INTERFAITH PROJECT/EAST VALLEY
INTERFAITH HEALTHCARE FACT SHEET, 2005

Citizens' Workgroup on the Long Term Workforce

Governor Janet Napolitano in 2004 responded to VIP/EVIís consistent advocacy to improve long term care in the state by appointing 25 members to the Citizensí Workgroup on the Long Term Care Workforce (CWG). The CWG has addressed the increasing shortage of entry level long term care workers through ten recommendations. With the approval of the Governor, the task now of the CWG is to begin the implementation of the recommendations.

  1. Policies that support the family/informal caregiver must be implemented by state agencies.
  2. Training for direct care workers must be standardized and uniform.
  3. Person-centered care should be the model for long term care plans.
  4. One state agency should be responsible for acquiring resources, grants, and other funding.
  5. Health insurance and benefits for direct care workers should be required by the state.
  6. Direct care workers should be paid a living wage.
  7. Funding for innovative pilot projects should be identified.
  8. The state should mount a public awareness campaign on the value of the long term care worker.
  9. Healthy living habits should be encouraged for all Arizonans.
  10. Direct care workers should be empowered and encouraged to form professional associations.

Caregiver Training Pilot

Members of VIP/EVI brought together three long term care providers with Phoenix College faculty to create a pilot training program for entry level home care workers. The first class of 16 has received a certificate of completion for this 45 hour (3 credit) course. It is anticipated to be duplicated throughout the state and to revolutionize the way these workers enter the workforce.

Downtown Medical Center

Arizona is facing a shortage of doctors. The addition of a medical school in Maricopa County will not only increase the number of doctors in the state. It is an integral part to the rebuilding of downtown and will contribute to the work of the T-Gen Center. VIP/EVI endorsed and advocated for the successful allocation of $7 million in the 2005-06 budget to establish the downtown medical center.

Funding for Registered Nurses Training

The shortage of nurses is directly connected to the shortage of instructors and programs in the stateís colleges. VIP/EVI supported and advocated with other groups for the passage of SB1294, allocating $20 m (+$20m matching federal funds) for additional nursesí instructors in the state.



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