The number of people aged 65 and older with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) is expected to grow from 5.3 million to 7.1 million between 2017 and 2025. However, successfully supporting people with dementia who live at home often requires the assistance of home care workers. Given this context, it is important to examine the training needs related to home care and dementia—and what states can do. This brief describes how dementia affects individuals, families, and home care workers. It explains why enhancing training for home care workers can better support clients, and where states are regarding dementia training requirements. Finally, it offers five general ways in which state policymakers can ensure home care workers are equipped to support this population.
The number of people aged 65 and older with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias is expected to grow from 5.3 million to 7.1 million between 2017 and 2025.
Proper training can help workers spot dementia symptoms in their clients, helping to ensure they receive early treatment.
Federal training standards do not require dementia training for home care workers, and only 13 states have dementia-specific training requirements.
Allison Cook is the New York Policy Manager at PHI. Her work focuses on New York policy issues affecting direct care workers, including Medicaid, public benefits, training, career advancement, and workforce development.
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