Sign Up to Receive PHI Alerts

PHI Releases Recap of #60CaregiverIssues Campaign

By Robert Espinoza (he/him) | March 25, 2019

In December 2018, PHI celebrated the end of its two-year public education campaign, #60CaregiverIssues. It was a remarkable—if exhausting—effort. Since February 2017, week to week, we had generated new studies and original analyses central to the home care workforce. Our goal from the beginning was to help solve the worsening workforce shortage in home care, which was leaving people stranded across the country.

This week, a little more than two years after the campaign’s launch, we’re releasing a recap of those 60 ideas. It serves as a wide-ranging list of solutions that, if implemented, would create a much stronger direct care workforce. It also reflects the central constructs of a strong civil society: a living wage, quality jobs, thriving careers, accessible health care—and much more. In the spirit of that release, here are five notable campaign moments from the last two years.

Ready, Set, Launch

PHI launched the campaign with a research brief listing eight signs that the shortage in direct care workers had become a crisis. (Number three: “The primary labor pool for direct care workers isn’t keeping pace with national trends, raising concerns about the broad appeal of this occupation.”) The launch captured the attention of our field and sparked op-eds in McKnight’s Senior Living, NextAvenue, and The Hill.

Direct Care Workers Are the Story

Two standouts from the campaign’s first year: a March 2017 research brief quantifying the beneficial impact of the Affordable Care Act on direct care workers and a June 2017 research brief on immigrants in the direct care sector. Both studies plugged into pressing political debates, generating news coverage across top outlets such as The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post, among many others. The studies also reminded the public that direct care workers play a central role in both health care and the economy.

Recognition of Creative Excellence

For years, the Communicator Awards have honored creative excellence for communication professionals, and in May 2018, the Academy for Interactive Visual Arts gave PHI a Communicator Award for our #60CaregiverIssues campaign. That year, more than 6,000 entries were submitted and approximately 20 percent received awards of distinction.

A Resource for Providers

In 2018, the second year of the campaign, we placed a stronger focus on practice-related topics, with the goal of helping providers to become stronger employers. In May 2018, we released a recruitment and retention guide for direct care employers, which outlined 10 strategies for successfully finding and holding onto direct care workers.

The Final Issue

The final issue of the campaign was an ode to imagination and the need for optimistic, large-scale ideas in the long-term care industry. In two years, #60CaregiverIssues had inspired a sector to address the growing crisis in home care. It had taken a seemingly intractable problem and reoriented the discussion to focus on solutions. On December 10, 2018, the day of the final issue release, we raised a glass and toasted the singular power of great ideas.

Read the recap of #60CaregiverIssues here.

Private: Robert Espinoza (he/him)
About The Author

Robert Espinoza (he/him)

Former Executive Vice President of Policy
Robert Espinoza oversees PHI's national advocacy and public education division on the direct care workforce, and contributes vision and leadership to the organization's strategies.

Caring for the Future

Our new policy report takes an extensive look at today's direct care workforce—in five installments.

Workforce Data Center

From wages to employment statistics, find the latest data on the direct care workforce.