Location:
DISEASES; HOME CARE SERVICES; OCCUPATIONAL TRAINING;
Scope:
Connecticut laws/regulations; Other States laws/regulations;

OLR Research Report


August 3, 2012

 

2012-R-0350

DEMENTIA TRAINING REQUIREMENTS FOR HOME HEALTH AIDES

By: Nicole Dube, Associate Analyst

You asked if Connecticut or other states require home health aides to complete dementia training.

Connecticut does not license or certify home health aides nor does it require them to complete dementia training. The Department of Public Health (DPH) licenses homemaker-home health aide and home health care agencies and requires home health aides they employ to complete a (1) DPH-approved training program of at least 75 hours and (2) competency evaluation. According to the department, the training program does not specifically require dementia training, but does require teaching of “ways to work with the population served” (Conn. Agencies Reg. 19-13-D69).

However, state law does require Alzheimer's special care units or programs to annually provide dementia-specific training to all staff as follows:

1. for all licensed and registered direct care staff, at least eight hours of training completed within six months of beginning employment followed by at least three hours annually thereafter and

2. for unlicensed and unregistered staff providing care and services to residents, at least one hour of training completed within six months of beginning employment (CGS 19a-562a).

An “Alzheimer's special care unit or program” is any nursing home, residential care home, assisted living facility, adult day center, hospice, or adult foster home that provides a special unit or program for residents with Alzheimer's disease or related disorders.

According to a Westlaw database search, five states (Alabama, Illinois, Iowa, North Dakota, and Missouri) require dementia training for home health aides. Table 1 below summarizes these states' requirements.

Table 1: State Dementia Training Requirements For Home Health Aides

State

Training Requirement

Alabama

The Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation's Bureau of Geriatric Psychiatry, upon receipt of sufficient funding, must train health care providers and other caregivers who care for people with Alzheimer's disease and related disorders at home. The training must (1) encourage the provision of long-term care for the person in his or her home and (2) reduce health care costs to the state, the person's family, and health care facilities (AL ST 22-50-72).

Illinois

The Department of Public Health, in cooperation with the Department on Aging, must develop specialized training and experience criteria for people who provide health or home care to people with Alzheimer's disease or related disorders (IL ST 20 2305/5.5).

Iowa

The Department on Aging must train, within available funding, those who regularly provide services to people with Alzheimer's disease and related disorders, including home health care workers. Initial training for direct care staff must include eight hours of classroom instruction and eight hours of supervised interactive experiences. Direct care staff must also complete eight hours of continuing and in-service education annually (IA ST 231.62).

North Dakota

The Department of Human Services must contract with a private provider for a dementia care services program in each area of the state served by a regional human service center. These services must include training care providers (presumably, this includes home health aides) to manage and care for people with dementia (ND ST 50-06-33).

Missouri

Dementia training must be provided to people employed by in-home and home health agencies, adult day centers, assisted living and residential care facilities, or nursing homes providing services to people with dementia. Training must include an overview of the disease, communicating with people with dementia, behavioral management, promoting independence with activities of daily living, and understanding and dealing with family issues (MO ST 191.115).

ND:ro