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American Rescue Plan Act: Medicaid HCBS Direct Care Workforce Reform and Analysis

Expanding, enhancing, and strengthening the direct care workforce

Wisconsin’s direct caregiving workforce is the backbone of home and community-based services. However, the industry is in crisis. Today, one in four direct caregiver positions is vacant. We are projected to need an additional 20,000 home care workers by 2024.

To better recruit, support, and retain these vital workers, our approach to using American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds includes:

  • Conducting staff stability surveys. Data will help assess turnover, tenure, wages, benefits, and other factors.
  • Expanding career opportunities. A statewide professional certification system will be created to improve competency and career advancement. Workers can gain portable skills that apply from one employer to another without retraining.
  • Designing a statewide workforce platform. This one-stop portal will feature job postings, candidate profiles, credentialing details, training opportunities, a resource library, and more. It will include a function to auto-match employers with job seekers.

This work will benefit agencies and workers who support these programs:

  • Children’s Long-Term Support Program
  • Family Care
  • Family Care Partnership
  • IRIS (Include, Respect, I Self-Direct)
  • Program for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE)

Goal outcomes include:

  • Better training and education for caregivers
  • A pathway for career advancement
  • More direct care workers
  • Improved quality and sustainability

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Last revised January 25, 2023