Resumption of Training Requirements and Certification Deadlines

Unless a worker is exempt from training as described in WAC 388-71-0839 or WAC 388-112A-0090, employees hired during the COVID-19 emergency must complete basic training, and required specialty training, as follows.  Please encourage all employees who need training/certification to begin the process as soon as possible.

Worker hired or rehired during the time frame of:Must complete basic training no later than:
8/17/2019 to 9/30/20204/30/2022
10/1/2020 to 4/30/20216/30/2022
5/1/2021 to 3/31/20228/31/2022
After 3/31/2022Standard training requirement

For workers who are required to be certified as home care aides, certification must be obtained as follows:

Worker hired or rehired during the time frame of:Must be certified as a home care aide no later than:
8/17/2019 to 9/30/20207/19/2022
10/1/2020 to 4/30/20219/18/2022
5/1/2021 to 3/31/202211/19/2022
After 3/31/2022Based on hire date

(*A long-term care worker is considered “rehired” if they held previous employment as a long-term care worker and did not have an active home care aide credential when hired during the time frames outlined above.)

If a long-term care worker is limited-English proficient, the worker may request an additional sixty days to obtain certification.

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Updated Visitation Guidance Effective 2/23/2022

On 2/23/22 the new LTC COVID Response (formerly Safe Start Plan) goes into effect opening indoor visitation in long-term care settings. Here is a link to the updated plan: LTC COVID Response Plan

Please look for a GovDelivery email from DSHS on Friday afternoon (2/18/22) with this announcement. The next two Thursday DOH Q&A calls will be dedicated to providing more information about these updates and answering questions. 

Register: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_nOtpmAYwTSKBxbnYnyP2jg

RCS-AFH Provider Forum Q&A-Winter 2022

   

We hope you were able to join us for the most recent provider forums. These quarterly meetings are an opportunity for you to meet with your local RCS staff with the intention of building relationships and getting your questions answered. Here is the Q&A document provided by RCS following our latest regional sessions:

RCS AFH Provider Forum Q&A-Winter 2022

 

Find your region: 

Register early for next quarter’s provider forums:

Region 1-Wednesday, April 13, 2022 1:00-2:30pm: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/8386578138552445451 

Region 2-Wednesday, April 20, 2022 1:00-2:30pm: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/6604388537183361040 

Region 3: Wednesday, April 27, 2022 1:00-2:30pm: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/2188805915127972366 

Executive Board Nominations: Region 7 – King County

The AFH Council executive board member representing region 7, King County has resigned due to the sale of her adult family homes.  In accordance with our bylaws, the Executive Board may appoint an individual to complete the remainder of the term.  We are soliciting nominations to fill the vacant position until the term ends in December of 2022. The appointed individual would be eligible to run for election in the winter of 2022 to a full three-year term.

Any current AFH Council member can nominate any qualified individual for this position. Nominees need to be AFH Council members with an AFH in King County and be willing to meet the responsibilities outlined here: Board Member Responsibilities

Nominations will be accepted until April 30, 2022.

If you choose to nominate another provider, please confirm their interest prior to submitting this form. 

Legislative Session 2022: Budget Update

Nearly 20 days into the 2022 60-day legislative session there has been a lot of activity relevant to adult family homes. We at the Council are participating in hearings, meetings with lawmakers, and working to forward legislation that will promote and align with our mission to improve lives through the support of adult family homes.

The Senate and the House of Representatives have both introduced budgets that impact our work.  First, both budgets include funding for our collective bargaining agreement.  The provisions of the agreement would include funding for increases to the Medicaid base daily rates.  The percentage of increase varies by classification.  The average base rate increase is 5%.

The contract funding will also include significant increases to the funding to the adult family home training networks house at the Long-Term Care Foundation.  This will allow them to expand the number of participants in their pilot program to address our workforce shortages.

On another budget note, both versions of the state operating budget include an extension of the COIVD rate enchantments through June of 2022.  Beginning in July of 2022 and for each quarter after, the amount of the add-on would be reduced until ending in June of 2023.  This approach assumes that the federal relief being provided throughout the state of emergency will come to an end.  This schedule could be changed based on federal stimulus of COVID relief funding that is authorized in the future.

We have expressed to law makers that these funds have become integral to the work you do.  Further, that the end of the state emergency will likely not end the requirements for masking, screening and other additional expectations in long term care resulting from the pandemic. Considering the ongoing workforce shortages, we certainly cannot expect to pay staff lower wages going forward. Removing the enhancements is equal to a nearly 15% cut in our pay. We will continue to work with lawmakers to seek a solution that recognizes the budget challenges as well as the ongoing needs of our membership. 

AFH Incentive-Acute Care Hospital Discharge Extended through 2/28/2021

This morning the AFH Council signed an MOU extending the hospital discharge incentive through the end of February 2022.

The ongoing COVID-19 outbreak continues to impact medical and long-term care settings across the country. As the state is responding to another surge, we have a critical need to create capacity in acute care hospitals to serve those who need emergency and intensive care during this ongoing outbreak.

One of the top priorities of the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) is continuing to work with patients who no longer have a need for acute care in a hospital to transition to alternative settings. This will create capacity for hospitals to serve individuals who need acute care that can only be provided in a hospital setting. If you choose to admit a resident through this incentive program, please note that this is not a short-term placement.

Click here to read the amended Dear Provider letter. (the Dear Provider Letter scheduled to be updated 2/21/2022)

Regional contacts for acute care hospital teams to help coordinate discharges

Quarterly RCS AFH Provider Forums

The AFH Council has scheduled quarterly regional meetings for you to meet your local RCS staff. The intention behind these meetings is to improve communication and to give you the opportunity to meet your Field Manager and get your questions answered. If you have any questions, you would like submitted to RCS ahead of time, please email karen@adultfamilyhomecouncil.org

Find your region:

RCS AFH Provider Forum-Region 1 Thursday, January 20, 2022 1:00-2:30pm https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/3279471970903641613

RCS AFH Provider Forum-Region 2 Wednesday, January 26, 2022 1:00-2:30pm https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/6346492586375627531

RCS AFH Provider Forum-Region 3 Wednesday, February 2, 2022 1:00-2:30pm https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/5582749819489870861

Board Election Results

Elections for our Executive Board of Directors closed on 12/31/2021. Thank you to all the members and staff who nominated, ran, voted, and supported this process. The results of the election are as follows:

  • Region Two delegate – Jenna Hester
  • Region Five delegate – George Kibunyi
  • At Large Delegate – Daniela Torkelson
  • At Large Delegate (Eastern WA) – Eugene Nassen

Our Executive Board helps prioritize and oversee the advocacy, education, support, and marketing efforts of the Adult Family Home Council. These are volunteer positions for three year terms. Board members dedicated many hours a year supporting our efforts. We are grateful for all of their efforts and congratulate those who will be serving to advance our mission.

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