Caregiver Training in 2022: It’s Time to Talk Training Deadlines

Updated: Apr 12

Article updated 12th April 2022.

The caregiving industry was hit severely by the COVID-19 pandemic. It has been challenging for all caregivers to maintain the quality of care while doing their best

to stop the spread of the virus and protect their families.

hca-training-and-certification-deadlines-2022

As a response to this challenging situation, Washington state did its best to lift some weight off the shoulders of caregivers, and long-term care providers by lifting the deadlines for caregiver training.


Now, training deadlines have resumed and we want to help you make sure that all of your caregivers have the necessary certifications in time.



What Does This Mean for Long-Term Care Facilities?


Long-term care facilities need to consider two things: their caregivers that don’t have their HCA certification, and the caregivers who have their HCA certificate but need to maintain it by keeping up with their continuing education.



HCA TRAINING AND CERTIFICATION DEADLINE DATES



If you hired or re-hired workers during the pandemic when training was suspended and emergency rules were in place, you need to explore the DSHS legislation WAC 388-71-0876. We have already done this for you summed up the requirements in an easy-to-follow version with the most important points highlighted in the tables below.


If you hired or rehired workers during the pandemic, they need to complete their 75 hours HCA Basic training by the following dates:


Worker hired or rehired during the time frame of:

Must complete basic training no later than:

8/17/2019 to 9/30/2020

10/31/2022

10/1/2020 to 4/30/2021

1/31/2023

5/1/2021 to 3/31/2022

4/30/2023

4/1/2022 to 9/30/2022

8/31/2023

10/1/2022 - 12/31/2022 or the end of the COVID-19 training waivers established by gubernatorial proclamation, whichever is later

9/30/2023 or within 120 days after the end of the COVID-19 training waivers established by gubernatorial proclamation, whichever is later

After the end of the COVID-19 training waivers established by gubernatorial proclamation or beginning 1/1/2023, whichever is later

Standard training requirement




If you hired or rehired workers during the pandemic, they need to pass their DSHS state exam by the following dates:

A worker hired or rehired during the time frame of

Must pass their DSHS state exam

8/17/2019 to 9/30/2020

1/19/2023

10/1/2020 to 4/30/2021

4/21/2023

5/1/2021 to 3/31/2022

7/19/2023

4/1/2022 to 9/30/2022

11/19/2023

10/1/2022 - 12/31/2022 or the end of the COVID-19 training waivers established by gubernatorial proclamation, whichever is later

12/19/2023 or within 200 days after the end of the COVID-19 training waivers established by gubernatorial proclamation, whichever is later

After the end of the COVID-19 training waivers established by gubernatorial proclamation or beginning 1/1/2023, whichever is later

Standard training requirement


Keep in mind that there are deadlines for completed training, as well as the deadlines for getting certified. Finishing the training doesn’t guarantee certification - it only means that they have completed their training and they can now take the HCA exam.



Are These Deadlines for Everybody? Are There Exceptions?




These deadlines don’t apply to two sets of workers:

  1. Long-term care workers with limited English proficiency

  2. Those exempted as described in WAC 388-71-0839 and WAC 388-112A-0090

Long-term workers with limited English proficiency can request an extension of their deadlines. DSHS will grant them an additional 60 days to obtain their certification.


Below is the list taken from WAC 388-71-0839 and WAC 388-112A-0090 containing the 7 types of long-term workers who are exempted from these deadlines:



  1. An individual employed as a long-term care worker on January 6, 2012, who complied with the basic training requirements in effect on the date of his or her hire;

  2. An individual previously employed as a long-term care worker who completed the basic training requirements in effect on the date of his or her hire, and was employed as a long-term care worker at some point between January 1, 2011 and January 6, 2012;

  3. Registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, and advanced registered nurse practitioners licensed under chapter 18.79 RCW;

  4. Nursing assistants certified under chapter 18.88A RCW and persons in an approved training program for certified nursing assistants under chapter 18.88A RCW provided that they complete the training program within one hundred twenty days of the date of hire and the department of health has issued them their nursing assistant certified credential within two hundred days of the date of hire;

  5. A home health aide who was employed by a Medicare-certified home health agency within the year before being hired as a long-term care worker and has met the requirements of 42 C.F.R., Sec. 484.36;

  6. An individual with special education training who has an endorsement granted by the Washington state superintendent of public instruction as described in RCW 28A.300.010; and

  7. Home care aides (HCAs) certified under chapter 18.88B RCW.



What About Continuing Education Deadlines?



DSHS recognizes that all long-term care workers who were employed during the pandemic had to have ongoing training about SARS-CoV-2 virus as guidance from CDC and other health authorities changed throughout the pandemic.


That’s why these long-term care workers are granted 12 hours of DSHS-approved continuing education credit for the training entitled "COVID-19 On-The-Job Training Protocols." There is no certificate issued or needed for this requirement - everyone already has credit for this.


DSHS allows for these CE hours to be applied to renewal periods between March 1, 2020, and December 31, 2021.


All caregivers have until December 31, 2022 or 120 days counting from the end of COVID-19 waivers (whichever comes later) to complete additional CE that came in due while training waivers were in place.


Any caregiver whose birthday falls after December 31, 2021, or their next birthday is within the 120 days after the waivers are lifted, will have 120 days from the end of training waivers to complete their CEs.


EXAMPLE:

RENEWAL CYCLE

CE APPLICATION EXAMPLE

January 15, 2019 - January 15, 2020

Worker was in compliance

January 15, 2020 - January 15, 2021

12 Hours COVID CE applied

January 15, 2021 - January 15, 2022

Worker has until December 31, 2022, or 120 days from the end of the waivers -whichever comes later.

January 15, 2022 - January 15, 2023

If a worker's next birthday allows fewer than 120 days after the waivers are lifted to complete required CE, the worker will have 120 days from the end of training waivers to complete the required CE.

Data taken from the DSHS website and email communication



How to Train Your Caregivers and Meet the Deadlines?


The fastest way to meet training deadlines is to use a 100% online HCA training solution. This means that caregivers can complete their 75-hour training through self-paced courses, in their own time. With Cornerstone Healthcare Training, there is even the option of completing the Skills Labs portion of the training online. There are different learning plans for people with different requirements.


Another option that Cornerstone offers at the moment is to complete the self-paced portion of the training online and to register for the in-person Skills Labs training in Spokane.


If you are not sure what sort of training your caregivers need in order to comply with DSHS rules and regulations, feel free to contact us and we’ll help you work it out.