The recent Health Care Reform enacted by Congress has focused on avoiding abuse to the elderly and those with special needs by incorporating the following provisions:
- It allows States to conduct national criminal background checks, including fingerprints, on anyone who seeks direct access to patients in long-term care facilities or with home care agencies receiving funding under the Medicare or Medicaid programs.
- It authorizes $10.8 million for Geriatric Education Centers to provide training for health care professionals, direct care workers and family care givers in such areas as long-term care, chronic care management, and geriatrics.
- It establishes a national panel of long-term care experts charged with creating core competencies to form the background of these training programs and to ensure they are comprehensive and consistent across the nation.
- There are even Federal training programs offering Advanced Degrees in Geriatric Nursing, Gero-Psychiatric Nursing, and long-term care.
- It establishes grants to health care professionals, such as pharmacists, clinical social workers, psychologists and advanced practice nurses to focus on long-term care, chronic care management and geriatrics.
In a future blog, I will address additional areas impacted by health care reform.
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