Information Bulletin 16-03: Dementia Care Training for Home Care Employees/Staff providing Home Care Services in Housing with Services Establishments with Dementia Programs and/or Assisted Living Services

Information Bulletin 16-03

HC: Home Care: 34
MHC: Medicare Certified Home Health Agency: 55

Dementia Care Training for Home Care Employees/Staff providing Home Care Services in Housing with Services Establishments with Dementia Programs and/or Assisted Living Services

New Laws Effective January 1, 2016

Purpose

The purpose of this information bulletin is to inform licensed home care providers of new state laws effective January 1, 2016 related to dementia training for home care staff providing home care services in Housing with Services (HWS) assisted living settings and/or HWS establishments with special dementia programs.

The HWS laws are located in Chapter 144D.

Note: Existing dementia training requirements for home care providers can be found in Minnesota Statute 144A.4796 and are also provided at the end of this document.

Implementation

This dementia care training applies to home care staff providing direct home care services and supervisors of direct-care staff in the following HWS establishments:

  • HWS Establishments with Alzheimer's disease special programs or special care units: HWS Establishments with Alzheimer's disease special programs or special care units, and/or that advertise, market, or otherwise promote as providing specialized care for Alzheimer's disease or related disorders under Minnesota Statute 325F.72.
  • HWS Establishments that provide assisted living: HWS Establishments that provide assisted living under Minnesota Chapter 144G, but do not have a special program or special care unit for residents with a diagnosis of probable Alzheimer's disease or related disorders.

Home care staff who must receive dementia care training: Employees of home care providers who provide direct care to clients in the HWS establishments identified above and supervisors of direct-care staff working in these HWS establishments must meet the new training requirements.

Dementia Training Requirements

For HWS Establishments with Alzheimer's disease special programs or special care units

  1. Supervisors and direct-care staff: Direct-care staff and supervisors of direct-care staff working in the HWS establishments described above must have at least two hours of training on topics related to persons with dementia for each 12 months of employment.
  2. Supervisors of direct-care staff: Supervisors of direct-care staff, hired January 1, 2016 or later, must have at least eight hours of initial training on the topics specified below within 120 working hours of the employment start date.
  3. Direct-care staff: Direct-care employees hired January 1, 2016 or later must complete at least eight hours of initial training on the topics specified below within 160 working hours of the employment start date. For new employees, this training must be completed before the employee begins providing direct care unless there is another employee on site who has completed the initial eight hours of training on topics related to persons with dementia and who can act as a resource and assist if issues arise. A trainer of the required topics, or a supervisor meeting the requirements as noted above, must be available for consultation with the new employee until the training requirement is complete.

Training Topics: Employees must receive training that covers the following topics related to persons with dementia:

  • An explanation of Alzheimer's disease and related disorders;
  • Assistance with activities of daily living;
  • Problem solving with challenging behaviors; and
  • Communication skills.

New employees may satisfy the initial dementia training requirements by producing written proof of previously completed required training within the past 18 months from the employment start date.

For HWS Establishments that provide assisted living

  1. Supervisors and direct-care staff: Direct-care staff and supervisors of direct-care staff working in the HWS establishments described above must have at least two hours of training on topics related to persons with dementia for each 12 months of employment.
  2. Supervisors of direct-care staff: Supervisors of direct-care staff, hired January 1, 2016 or later, must have at least four hours of initial training on the topics specified above within 120 working hours of the employment start date.
  3. Direct-care staff: All direct-care employees hired January 1, 2016 or later must complete at least four hours of initial training on the topics specified above within 160 working hours of the employment start date. For new employees, this training must be completed before the employee begins providing direct care unless there is another employee on site who has completed the initial four hours of training on topics related to persons with dementia and who can act as a resource and assist if issues arise. A trainer of the required topics, or a supervisor meeting the requirements as noted above, must be available for consultation with the new employee until the training requirement is complete.

Training Topics: Employees must receive training that covers the following topics related to persons with dementia:

  • An explanation of Alzheimer's disease and related disorders.
  • Assistance with activities of daily living.
  • Problem solving with challenging behaviors.
  • Communication skills.

New employees may satisfy the initial dementia training requirements by producing written proof of previously completed required training within the past 18 months from the employment start date.

Documentation and Records

Documentation of the training, the dates conducted and the topics covered must be documented in writing and recorded in the employee's personnel file. MDH has provided an optional form for documenting compliance with these requirements. See attached forms.

Enforcement

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) will review training records as part of the home care provider survey process. The commissioner may also request and review training records at any time during the year.

Fines for noncompliance

Beginning January 1, 2017, MDH may impose a $200 fine for every staff person required to obtain dementia care training who does not have training records to show compliance. Prior to imposing the fine, the home care provider will be allowed two weeks for staff to complete the required training. Fines will be imposed on the home care provider for direct-care staff and supervisors of direct-care staff who have not met the training requirements. The home care provider must allow for the required training as part of employee and staff duties. Imposition of a fine by the commissioner does not negate the need for the required training.

Technical Assistance and Resources

Technical assistance

The commissioner shall provide technical assistance instead of imposing fines for noncompliance with the training requirements from January 1, 2016, to December 31, 2016. If the home care provider is surveyed during calendar year 2016, MDH home care surveyors will review the provider’s training records to determine if the requirements have been met. The home care provider will be informed of their findings and no correction orders related to noncompliance with the training requirements will be issued during calendar year 2016.

Training Resources

Training resources are available to meet the training requirements in this law from a variety of sources. One available resource is provided through the Minnesota Act on Alzheimer’s collaborative which provides several options.

Please refer to: Act on Alzheimer's

Existing dementia training requirements

Reminder of existing dementia training requirements for home care providers: All staff providing and supervising direct home care services must complete an orientation to home care licensing requirements and regulations before providing home care services to clients. The requirements of orientation can be found at Minnesota Statutes, section 144A.4796.

As a part of the orientation, home care providers that provide services to persons with Alzheimer’s disease or related disorders must train the direct-care staff and supervisors who work with those clients. Minnesota Statutes, section 144A.4796, subdivision 5 addresses this requirement. The training must include the following:

  • An explanation of Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders;
  • Effective approaches to use to problem-solve when working with a client’s challenging behaviors;
  • How to communicate with clients who have Alzheimer’s disease or related disorders.

For additional information, or if you have questions please contact:

Home Care and Assisted Living Program
Health Regulation Division
Minnesota Department of Health
P.O. Box 64900
St. Paul, Minnesota 55164-0900
651-201-5273, toll-free 888-345-0823
Health.homecare@state.mn.us

Dementia Care Training for Home Care Staff Providing Home Care Services in a Housing With Services Establishment with Dementia Program – Optional Form (PDF)

Dementia Care Training for Home Care Staff providing Home Care Services in a Housing With Services Establishment with Assisted Living Services – Optional Form (PDF)


Updated Tuesday, May 17, 2016 at 11:17AM