Today’s long-term care system remains fractured and scattered, routinely failing to improve direct care jobs—a reality that has become even more pronounced during the COVID-19 crisis.
We Can Do Better: How Our Broken Long-Term Care System Undermines Care describes the shortfalls in long-term care financing; the seismic shifts in the long-term care landscape; and the many, dispersed stakeholders that comprise long-term care, including employers, federal and state governments, managed care plans, and and many others. This report aims to directly inform the discussion on the long-term care response to COVID-19.
This report is the second installment in a year-long series of reports examining the importance and impact of the direct care workforce. The final, comprehensive report—Caring for the Future—will be released in January 2021. This report series was made possible through generous support from the W. K. Kellogg Foundation and the Woodcock Foundation.
IN THE WORDS OF WORKERS
To inform the dialogue on direct care jobs, PHI spoke with workers in different parts of the country to hear their stories and ideas.
"“Caring for somebody feels amazing, and helping people really is the best way of giving back.” "
Care Partner at Villas at Killearn Lakes (Tallahassee, FL)
"“We work too hard….and we're not getting paid for how hard we work. That's the problem.”"
Home Health Aide at JASA (Jewish Association Serving the Aging) (Brooklyn, NY)
"“There's too much work to get done and not enough people doing the work. And I know that a lot of that has to do with pay.”"
Home Care Specialist & Personal Care Worker at Community Living Alliance (Madison, WI)
Our long-term services and supports system does not adequately meet consumer needs or invest in direct care jobs.
As the long-term care system grows rapidly, workforce development remains virtually unaddressed in public policy.
Long-term care should be better financed, organized, and regulated to strengthen the direct care workforce.
Stephen McCall is a Data and Policy Analyst at PHI. In this capacity, he studies and writes about a variety of issues facing the direct care workforce–with the goal of reforming state and national policies.
Caring for the Future
Our new policy report takes an extensive look at today's direct care workforce—in five installments.