December 1, 2016
On Monday, November 28, Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) signed into law a bill (A10707/S08110) to create an advanced home health aide (AHHA) occupation. Introduced by Assemblyperson Deborah Glick (D) and Senator Kenneth LaValle (R), the bill represents the culmination of a four-year effort by a coalition of statewide organizations, which included PHI. The legislation passed the NYS legislature in June 2016.
The new law allows specially trained AHHAs, under the supervision of a registered nurse, to perform tasks that have until now only been allowed to be performed by a nurse, the individual consumer, a member of the consumer’s immediate family, or through a program called Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program (CDPAP). These constraints were burdensome for family members, who had to adjust their schedules or reduce their working hours to administer routine, pre-packaged, or pre-poured medications to their loved ones. Prior to the new law, home care aides were prohibited from administering medications.
“The signing of the Advanced Home Health Aide bill marks an important milestone in the effort to improve the quality of jobs for New York’s home care aides and the quality of care for elders and people living with disabilities,” said Jodi M. Sturgeon, president of PHI. “This advanced role gives workers a much-needed opportunity for professional growth, while also making sure that families across the state are able to access trained workers to provide essential services.”
“It also simplifies caregiving responsibilities for family members managing care for loved ones, and that is really important,” added Carol Rodat, PHI’s former Director of New York Policy.