The first BTBQ™ Trainer Certificate Program was recently held at the Grand Ledge Public Schools Administration Building. Participants attended two teleconferences and two in-person day-long sessions to learn about and practice delivering the BTBQ™ training to PCAs. The BTBQ™ curriculum is designed to train PCAs to assist older or disabled adults in their own home in a person-centered way. In addition, the curriculum is designed specifically for adult learners with lots of hands-on and interactive learning.
These new Trainers will complete their training practicum and will be ready to hold BTBQ™ trainings for PCAs in five different regions across Michigan!
Words can make a difference. Changing how we think about Personal Care Aide (PCA) work requires changing how we talk about the older adults that PCAs assist. "MayDay" by Karen Schoeneman, describes how the words that we use can either convey respect for older adults or unintentionally demean them. In her article, Schoeneman gives a list of “old words” commonly used in long term care settings and provides suggestions for more respectful new words. Demeaning words such as “bib”, “wandering” and “the elderly” can be replaced with more respectful terms like “clothing protector”, “walking” and “elders” or “older adults”. We can all continue to add to the list and commit to contributing to a culture change that values each person and the PCAs that assist them. Help add to the list – what words do you would you like to see replaced?
IMPART Co-I, Clare Luz, participates in panel at the Alliance for health policy summit in washington, d.c.: "caring for an aging population"
The work of IMPART Alliance has been getting attention at the national level! IMPART Co-PI, Clare Luz, recently participated in a panel discussion ”Caring for an Aging Population” in Washington D.C. at the Alliance for Health Policy (AHP) summit on Care Delivery in the Future: The Role of the Health Care Workforce. AHP summits provide a venue for legislators and media to get briefed on major issues facing the nation. The “Aging” panel focused heavily on the need to support family caregivers and paid direct care workers to make homecare viable. Reasons for the workforce shortage and strategies to address it were highlighted, including comprehensive training, diversifying funding, higher wages/benefits, placing higher value on the work, and policy changes such as allowing pre-employment training to be covered by Medicaid. These are all issues and strategies that our IMPART Alliance Board has been discussing and is now working on to make a difference! We are on the front lines and can be a model for the nation. Great work everyone! www.IMPARTalliance.org
Cean Eppelheimer, PHI Midwest Organizational Change Consultant and IMPART Alliance Advisory Board Member, authored this piece on the IMPART Alliance project:
Michigan Research Team Launches Personal Care Aide Initiative
September 19, 2017
By Cean Eppelheimer, PHI Midwest Organizational Change Consultant
The population across the United States is aging rapidly, increasing the demand for high-quality, long-term services and supports. This demand is quickly outpacing the number of available care providers across the care continuum—and Michigan is no exception.
Michigan is facing a critical shortage of personal care assistants (PCAs) who are trained to deliver essential services that go beyond what family members provide: bathing, dressing, cooking, and transportation. As the baby boomer generation continues to age, and they require a range of services and supports, this already-strained workforce has the potential to buckle under the increased demand. The long-term field needs a stable, well-trained direct care workforce.
Complicating these challenges is the fact that there are no federal personal care assistant competencies or training requirements for PCAs, despite evidence that a stable, well-trained workforce results in higher satisfaction among workers and clients, as well as improved health outcomes for consumers.
A Michigan State University research team is confronting these challengers through the IMPART (Integrated Model for Personal Assistant Research and Training) initiative. With support from a 500K, two-year grant from the Michigan Health Endowment Fund, the IMPART team is led by Clare Luz, Ph.D., at the Department of Family Medicine within the College of Human Medicine at Michigan State University.
Dr. Luz has assembled a highly diverse, statewide coalition of stakeholders—the IMPART Alliance—that will determine feasible strategies for ensuring a high-quality personal care assistant workforce, sufficient in numbers to meet demand. IMPART advisory board members include researchers, personal care aides, clients, and various agencies (including PHI) committed to the common goals of building, stabilizing, and supporting the personal care assistant workforce.
Over the next 18 months, the advisory board will focus on:
1. Increasing the value placed on PCA work and the PCA profession by changing public perceptions through coalition work, recruiting and developing champions, and crafting a persuasive marketing campaign.
2. Identifying a fuller range of financing mechanisms and sustainable business models for supporting PCA training and wrap-around services.
The IMPART work will build on the evidence-based PCA training program, “Building Training…. Building Quality (BTBQ).” BTBQ is a 77-hour training curriculum for PCAs developed under a 2010 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the collaborative efforts of the Michigan Aging and Adult Services Agency, MSU’s Department of Family Practice within the College of Human Medicine, and PHI.
The IMPART Alliance Advisory Board recently reached consensus on key issues that they will be addressing over the next 18 months in their effort to build and support the PCA workforce. Look for exciting action and progress as they commit themselves to the following statement:
The IMPART Alliance Advisory Board, a highly diverse statewide group of stakeholders, is committed to the common goal of building, stabilizing and supporting the personal care assistant (PCA) workforce. The Board supports the core IMPART team in achieving long-term goals such as advancing the PHI Nine Elements of a Quality Job (https://phinational.org/9-essential-elements-quality-job), endorsed certification, and development and dissemination of the Building Training…Building Quality (BTBQ) training program. As part of their work, the Board will focus specifically on creating positive momentum in the following two areas:
1. Increasing the value placed on PCA work and respect for the PCA profession by changing public perceptions through coalition work, recruiting/developing champions, and crafting a persuasive marketing campaign.
2. Identifying a fuller range of financing mechanisms and sustainable business models for supporting PCA training and wrap around services.
Comments? We would love to hear from you.
IMPART Alliance PI, Clare Luz, received an Archie Green Fellowship from the American Folklife Center at the National Library of Congress for the project, “Personal Home Care Aides in Michigan.” Working with Michigan State University folklorist, Marsha MacDowell and photographer Khalid Ibrahim, Dr. Luz will interview and record the experiences of thirty Michigan personal care aides (PCAs). The IMPART Alliance Advisory Board will help identify key aspects of PCA stories that are important to capture and will use the findings to advocate on behalf of PCAs. PCAs represent an increasingly critical workforce that assists older and disabled adults, yet they are consistently under-valued by our society and often struggle with low wages and unstable working conditions. Dr. Luz's project will serve to promote public awareness and support of this growing workforce.
The IMPART Alliance Advisory Board held their kick off meeting on April 25th, 2017! This group will play a key role in developing strategies for building and supporting the direct care workforce in Michigan, specifically those assisting older adults living in their own homes. Participants represented a diverse range of stakeholders including personal care aides (PCAs), clients, family members, home care agency representatives, Area Agencies on Aging and other advocates. It was an exciting, historic day and everyone is looking forward to taking an active role in developing concrete achievable goals for addressing difficult PCA workforce challenges and to creating a statewide alliance of people committed to this mission. We’ll post regularly to keep everyone in the loop as this project unfolds.
Welcome to our new IMPART Alliance blog. We hope it will serve as one way, among others, to build community with you. IMPART Alliance is just that, an alliance made up of many people from different walks of life who believe in the value of older adults and, for many different reasons, are committed to developing and supporting a competent, compassionate direct care workforce. The IMPART project is laying a foundation in Michigan for achieving this goal. Check back regularly for updates and personal musings. Tell us how you feel. We’re all in this together!