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PHI State Data Center on the Direct-Care Workforce Upgraded

August 8, 2013

The PHI State Data Center, the first web-based tool to provide comprehensive state-by-state profiles of nursing home aides, home health aides, and personal care aides, has been upgraded with the most recent wage, employment, and demographic data available on one of the largest and fastest-growing workforces (pdf) in the nation.

The site — first launched in September 2011 — now allows users to download charts or share them through social media. It also includes state training requirements for each of the three direct-care occupations.

For each state, a chart features the number of required training hours for home health aides and nursing aides as compared to federal training standards. Additionally, the data center details state-level training standards for Medicaid-funded personal care aides, in terms of the required elements of training and the level of uniformity of these requirements across different Medicaid programs within each state. (There are no federal training standards for this direct-care occupation.)

“With states taking note of the rapidly increasing demand for direct-care workers to provide long-term services and supports, we’ve found that policymakers, advocates, and service providers are all seeking reliable, user-friendly state-level information on the direct-care workforce,” said PHI Associate Director of Policy Research Abby Marquand. “Thousands of stakeholders have already turned to the PHI State Data Center for state profiles of the direct-care workforce; we expect interest in this type of information to continue to surge as the need for these essential workers continues to grow.”

Employment Characteristics and Demographics

Direct-care workforce employment characteristics and demographics are illustrated in downloadable charts, including those on:

  • workforce size and projected employment growth
  • trends in wages for each direct-care occupation, and
  • health insurance coverage rates and reliance on public assistance.

The web-based data tool also contains information on:

  • training standards
  • legislation and regulatory developments pertaining to the workforce, such as summaries of pending or passed bills and regulatory actions, and
  • notable state-based initiativesemployer best practices, and resources.

“Enhanced features of PHI’s web-based tool make essential state-by-state information about our nation’s direct care workforce more accessible and easier to share with others,” said Bruce Chernof, MD, president and CEO of The SCAN Foundation. “These workers are an increasingly important element of the health care team that helps people to age with dignity and independence.”

The PHI State Data Center compiles and analyzes the most recent data from various sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics and Employment Projections Programs.

The development of the PHI State Data Center — and this upgrade — has been supported in part by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services/National Direct Service Workforce Resource Center, and a grant from The SCAN Foundation.

— by Deane Beebe

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