SECTION 1. Chapter 118E of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 official edition is hereby amended by inserting at the end thereof the following new section: -
Section 78. MassHealth shall provide not less than $90 million annually to fund a rate add-on for wages, benefits and related employee costs of direct care staff of licensed nursing homes, including certified nurse aides, housekeeping, laundry and dietary staff. MassHealth shall, subject to appropriation, adjust the annual direct care labor add-on with an inflation adjustment consistent with the annual Massachusetts Consumer Price Index as determined by the federal Bureau of Statistics for the purpose of funding an increase in wages for nursing home direct care staff including certified nurse aides, housekeeping, laundry and dietary. MassHealth shall adopt all additional regulations and procedures necessary to carry out this section, including audits, and shall report to the house and senate committees on ways and means an analysis of funds expended under the direct care add on program.
SECTION 2. Chapter 111 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 official edition, is hereby amended by inserting after section 4O the following new section:-
Section 4P. The Department shall, subject to appropriation, establish a scholarship program for certified nurses' aide and direct care worker training. The department shall establish appropriate guidelines and application criteria for the administration of the program. The scholarships shall cover the full cost of tuition to an approved certified nurses' aide or long-term care direct worker training program, including approved programs providing for cross-training. Funds may also be available to provide adult basic education and English as a second language training for applicants otherwise meeting criteria for the scholarships, as well as pilot training programs using enhanced curricula designed to support increased retention. The department shall, in consultation with the nursing home industry, consumer groups, the department of labor and workforce development, the Commonwealth Corporation, training providers and other appropriate state and local agencies, conduct outreach regarding the availability of such scholarships. The department shall consult with the scholarship program advisory council to review and recommend new training requirements for certified nurses' aides, home health aides and home care workers to improve the quality of the direct care workforce and the quality of care provided in all long-term care settings by developing skill standards, supporting the transition from training to work, improving retention, promoting portability, recognizing career advancement curricula and addressing language and education barriers. The costs for outreach activities shall not exceed 3 per cent of the amount of the program and administrative costs of the program shall not exceed 3 per cent of the amount of the program.
SECTION 3. Chapter 23 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2016 official edition is hereby amended by inserting after section 9U the following new section:
Section 9V. The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development through the Commonwealth Corporation shall, subject to appropriation, establish a $2.5 million annual grant program for nursing facility supervisory and leadership training. The program shall, but not be limited to, covering the cost of nursing facility worker participation in evidence-based supervisory training for the express purpose of retaining staff and reducing turnover.
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