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Mental Retardation Update #04-03
January 30, 2004

Direct Care Workers

  1. An eight-page brief published by the Better Jobs Better Care program illustrates how direct care workers are helping improve both the workplace practices and public policies that affect their working conditions, salaries, benefits and opportunities for professional growth. This involvement includes worker associations, unions, employer-initiated workplace changes, workplace committees to address care delivery and workforce practices; employer-sponsored policy action groups. For a copy access www.bjbc.org/content/docs/BJBCIssueBriefNo2.pdf.
  2. PA Intra-Governmental Council on Long-Term Care has funded 12 grants to seek improvements in job quality for PA’s direct-care workforce. Schuylkill County Department of Human Services was funded to develop the Schuylkill Direct Care Association. This agency will provide leadership training to members, encourage career advancement, increased pay, coordinate the efforts of various county agencies to improve training, education and communication skills for workers.

    The PA Homecare Association was funded to create a board comprised of direct-care workers from home care, nursing homes and adult services. The board will develop a quarterly magazine and coordinate a statewide conference for direct care workers. For details access www.directcareclearinghouse.org/news.jsp#sfa.

Resources
Training CD: “Bathing Without a Battle” is an interactive CD and videotape for staff in long-term care settings to teach person-centered techniques for bathing people with dementia. This is also applicable for staff service persons with developmental disabilities and with aggressive behaviors. The CD offers 3 hours of continuing education credits for nurses and 2 hours for nursing assistants and administrators. For details on ordering access www.bathingwithoutabattle.unc.edu.


Conferences/Seminars

October 14-17: National Rehabilitation Association Training Conference at Sheraton Society Hill, Philadelphia. Call for workshop proposals from the public and private sector that span a variety of rehabilitation issues. For details on presenting contact: Bonnie Bluett 717-771-4407, bbluett@state.pa.us.

Office of Mental Reatrdation (OMR)

  1. OMR will not be issuing the new Incident Management Bulletin by January 31 as projected. Until the issuance of the new bulletin, continue use of the existing bulletin #00-01-05.
  2. HCSIS will begin running most reports overnight as a batch, rather than immediately, beginning January 31. Providers will be able to access the requested report on the following day by going to a new screen called “Reports Inbox”. Data on these reports will include everything that occurred through close of business on the day the report was requested.
  3. Beginning January 31 HCSIS will be connected to DPW’s Master Client Index (MCI) system. Linking these systems will allow one unique identifier across all DPW applications. The link to MCI will help avoid entering duplicate individual records and repeating data entry.
  4. Any new individual record entering in HCSIS will have to be cleared against MCI. If an exact match is not found the user will select from the potential matches or indicate a new record has to be created in the MCI system.

State of the States
Fiscal year 2000-2002 data from state agencies that service people with mental retardation and developmental disabilities show an increase in the numbers of people living in smaller out-of-home residential settings with fewer living in public and private institutional facilities. In Pennsylvania, community service revenue in 2002 was $747.7 million state funds and $781 million federal funds with 6% for ICF/MR; 67% HCBS Waiver. Home and Community Based Service Waiver participants were 22,916 with the average waiver spending per participants at $42,000. Family support spending was at $39.8 million; Supported employment spending was at $30.5 million; and Supported living and personal assistance spending was at $20.7 million.

Details are available in the newly released The State of the States in Developmental Disabilities 2004. To order a copy for $15 call 303-735-0252 or for a downloadable copy access www.cu.edu/ColemanInstitute/stateofthestates.

Volunteers Needed
PCPA is beginning plans for the October 2004 Annual Conference and two volunteers representing the mental retardation system are needed to help coordinate this conference. This is a time limited effort and a very rewarding opportunity to help develop the trainings and sessions. If you are interested, please contact Kris Ericson or Linda Drummond at PCPA.

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