Futuro Health Vaccination Clinic Leads to Allied Health Graduates

For licensed vocational nursing student Majida Elmellah, it doesn’t get much better than this. In need of clinical hours to graduate this spring, the Unitek College student also helped save lives in working with Futuro Health at the Moscone COVID-19 vaccination center.

“It was an amazing experience,” Elmellah said. “It was very well organized, well managed, and involved great teamwork. Most of all, from what I could see, the patients were very pleased.”

This graduation season, students like Elmellah across the state of California faced a delay in earning a degree because of the pandemic disrupting access to clinical hours needed for graduation. For hundreds of students in Northern California, however, the opportunity to volunteer with Futuro Health at the Moscone vaccination center gave the opportunity to earn experience that has made a spring 2021 graduation possible.

“Not only were we able to contribute to widespread vaccination efforts in San Francisco, but the students who joined us from College of San Mateo, Unitek College, and Quest Nursing all gained the clinical, hands-on experience needed to fulfill their graduation and licensing requirements,” said Debbie Yaddow, Futuro Health’s Senior Director of Pathway Development. “Best of all, these students accrued over 7,500 clinical hours at no-cost.”

The pandemic formed a catch-22 for allied health students: there is a national shortage of allied healthcare workers, but students have not been able to graduate and enter the workforce because of the pandemic’s impact on access to clinical hours. In particular, California has a looming demand for approximately 500,000 new allied healthcare workers by 2024. This daunting gap is precisely why Futuro Health has made a commitment to graduate 10,000 new licensed and/or credentialed allied healthcare workers by 2024 and also committed to assisting with staffing the Moscone vaccination center. 

“This unique, collaborative endeavor shows how we can provide patients with high-quality care while helping to move students toward fulfilling, in-demand careers,” said Tom Hanenburg, senior vice president of Kaiser Permanente Hospital System Operations.

The Campaign consortium, initiated by Kaiser Permanente, included Adventist Health, the California Medical Association, Dignity Health, and Futuro Health. Over the course of eight weeks, Futuro Health staffed the Moscone vaccination center Pod L, the accessibility pod, with 387 workers who covered 4,350 shifts and volunteered 25,500 hours. When combined with the consortium’s efforts at Cal Poly, Stockton, and Bakersfield, 677,100 vaccines were given to both the general public and Kaiser Permanente members.

“The opportunity provided for the students at Futuro Health was amazing,” said Julie Withrington RN, BSN, CCRN, NNEB, Professor of Nursing at the College of San Mateo. “The students were able to become part of a huge public health initiative while gaining direct clinical hours administering vaccines to the local community in San Francisco. The student body at College of San Mateo is incredibly diverse and many of the students are fluent in other languages. The students were able to utilize their language skills putting patients at ease addressing their concerns related to the COVID vaccine while providing quality care.”  

While Futuro Health’s agile response helped on a broad level by vaccinating community members and providing students with much needed clinical hours, it also proved to be a deeply personal experience for students and faculty volunteers alike.

“This clinical experience has made me feel like I have finally entered the clinical learning environment where I begin to experience the way multiple disciplines work together to care for the patients,” said Unitek College student Marizelle Ochoa. “I like to say thank you for giving us this great learning opportunity.”

Cheyenne Vennarucci, a registered nurse who volunteered at the Moscone Center, concurs. “Participating in the Futuro Health/Kaiser Moscone mass vaccination clinic has been one of the greatest privileges of my career. Getting to be a part of history, in such a monumental way, has truly been a wonderful opportunity for me. In addition to making history, I was able to work with the nursing students of my alma mater as well as several other nursing students. It was an honor to give back and help train the next generation of nurses to come out and join us on the frontlines. It is something I will always treasure and be so proud to have been a part of.” 

The Upward Swing of Upskilling: Futuro Health’s Reskill & Upskill Programs Serve Critical Needs

When Larry Good’s wife, Rhonda, suffered septic shock from an E. coli infection and became a quadriplegic, the pair interfaced with dozens of specialists and juggled a litany of medications. Moving from hospital to rehabs and back was stressful for them both — not only because of the physical peril it placed on an immunocompromised Rhonda but because Larry was left to fill in the gaps where communication failed between Rhonda’s care providers. Acting as her advocate, Larry was responsible for the logistics of Rhonda’s care outside of hospital and rehab settings, as so many family members of patients are required to do.

“There was no one to talk to in the medical community who would help us and advise us on what’s the right thing to do next, and because I had to make some decisions without important input and context from medical professionals, we ended up making some really critical errors,” said Larry. 

As Larry managed Rhonda’s condition over her remaining five years, he found that while each medical facility did their best to improve Rhonda’s outcomes while she was under their care, the lack of continuity between each provider was detrimental to her health. Larry had a few heroic doctors to lean on, but as he put it, those doctors “were independent, not systemic.”

Despite the best efforts of our nation’s doctors and hospitals, many patients and their families feel that they lack part of the critical support they need. For people like Larry and Rhonda, an advocate serving in a care coordinator role – also referred to as a patient navigator – can make all the difference. Care coordinators are not a new role, but they have not been readily available or adopted throughout the healthcare industry, and there are few educational programs that focus on upskilling current allied health professionals to ready them for these roles.

“The challenge facing the workforce isn’t just limited to a shortage of able-bodies. Reskilling and upskilling workers is critical as the healthcare industry deals with swift changes and evolving needs,” said Futuro Health CEO Van Ton-Quinlivan. 

Futuro Health is working to meet the needs of families like the Goods with its Care Coordinator Program.  

Another upskilling emphasis is telehealth skills which became in-demand because of the pandemic and is expected to remain so even after. Futuro Health offers tuition-free training for public health workers to complete the Advanced Telehealth Coordinator Program. Already, over 230+ health clinic staff attended thanks to Futuro Health and praised the 15-week fully online program for its relevance in helping them do their job better. In a recent focus group, an alumnus also complimented the Advanced Telehealth Coordinator Program for its flexibility and focus on equitable care, stating, “I really liked that it was online so I could work at it besides my contact tracing job. There’s a lot of people who don’t have access to healthcare because they live in rural areas or they’re in remote tribal areas. I think this [telehealth] is a way to make healthcare more equitable for people who don’t live in urban areas.”

In addition to two Care Coordinator programs (Behavioral Health and Chronically Ill) and the  Advanced Telehealth Coordinator program, Futuro Health also offers the Behavioral Health Microcredential and Patient Care Representatives, which will train healthcare workers to care for various populations utilizing different patient care technologies and data measurement tools, as upskilling opportunities for existing healthcare workers.   

For more information on Futuro Health’s upskilling opportunities for healthcare workers, please visit futurohealth.org.

Futuro Health Keynotes Conference of National Healthcare Trade Associations

Every year, the Association Forum, whose members include the nation’s healthcare association leaders, holds a healthcare collaborative conference to discuss the major issues facing the industry. Association and organization leaders share their viewpoints and insights, working collectively to address common challenges. From race disparities to social determinants in healthcare, the Association Forum is ahead of the curve in setting an agenda that reflects the gaps in health care. 

This year, Futuro Health’s CEO Van Ton-Quinlivan provided the keynote. Other speakers and panelists include healthcare behemoths American Medical Association and National Association for Healthcare Quality. 

“Van’s keynote and insights on key issues, like burnout, provided an excellent foundation for workforce needs both today and into the future,” said Laurie McGraw, Senior VP Health Solutions, American Medical Association.

The theme for the 2021 Summer Healthcare Collaborative, which took place on July 27, was “The Current and Future State of Healthcare in America.” As a workforce expert for healthcare, Ton-Quinlivan was chosen for her expertise in how the country can overcome the workforce shortages facing the industry today and prepare providers for the future.

Ton-Quinlivan’s talk entitled, “WorkforceRx: Agile and Inclusive Strategies for Unsettled Times”, highlighted workforce development strategies that afford agility and inclusivity.  

“Companies often approach workforce development as an individual sport, but a collaborative approach can build an ecosystem where willing partners do what they do best and braid resources to grow the talent pool,” said Van Ton-Quinlivan. 

McGraw preceded Ton-Quinlivan and shared recent factoids informing physician burnout:

•Physicians have higher resilience than the general employed US population.*

•Even highly resilient physicians have substantial rates of burnout.

•Nearly 30% of physicians reported being anxious or depressed; work overload**

•Nearly 2/3 experienced high levels of fear of COVID exposure and/or transmission to their family.

46% experienced an enhanced sense of meaning and purpose.

National Healthcare Panel of Experts Sends Inclusive Recovery Proposal to Congress & the White House

Access to Training, Transparent Career Advancement, and Pay Must Be Addressed to Build an Inclusive Care Economy Infrastructure

[Sacramento, CA] — National Skills Coalition (NSC) and Business Leaders United for Workforce Partnerships (BLU) released a five-point policy proposal from its Healthcare Industry Recovery Panel to inform White House and Congressional negotiations around the President’s proposed $400 billion investment in Care Economy infrastructure under the American Jobs Plan.

Van Ton-Quinlivan, CEO of Futuro Health, served on the 15-member panel of leading experts from across the country and called for a set of policies — including expanding access to Pell grants and increasing Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates — that responds to the growing demand for direct and allied healthcare workers.

“The pandemic has taught us how quickly conditions can shift. Skills training is essential for workers to stay relevant as work evolves,” said Ton-Quinlivan. “Through the American Jobs Plan, the President proposed investments in our Care Economy and in the skills and pay of the people on the frontlines of that economy — Congress and the White House must fulfill them to grow our nation’s essential healthcare workforce.”

“Frontline healthcare workers across the country, who are predominantly women and people of color, have been caring for people in the most high-risk settings while adapting to new ways of delivering care in a pandemic,” said Andy Van Kleunen, CEO of National Skills Coalition. “These policy recommendations from Futuro Health CEO Van Ton-Quinlivan and other leading experts will help attract and grow the healthcare workforce our nation needs, while making good on the President’s commitment to an equitable recovery.”

THE PROBLEM:

Underpaid labor, lack of access to training, and lack of transparent and accessible career advancement were contributing to labor shortages in direct and community-based healthcare before COVID-19 hit — median annual turnover among nursing assistants was 99% from 2016 to 2019, according to the Paraprofessional Health institute, for example. Increased risk, new patient needs that put new demands on allied healthcare workers, and closed schools (a major issue for these gender-segregated occupations) caused many workers to leave the caring economy for jobs advertising higher pay and lower stress, like e-commerce delivery and warehouse positions, increasing unfilled job openings. The industry also adopted new practices and innovations due to changing healthcare needs, creating new jobs that require new skills.

THE SOLUTION:

In an effort to address these challenges and shape proposed investment in our Care Economy infrastructure, panelists have been meeting with federal officials over the last month in advance of publicly releasing their recommendations. They outlined five critical pillars to driving an inclusive care economy, all of which can be viewed here.

  1. Prioritize workforce investments and equity under the American Jobs Plan by including resources to train new and incumbent workers for an expanded caring economy; investing in childcare, transportation assistance, and other wrap-around supports; and measuring outcomes with a focus on improving equity and job quality. In particular, providing quality, affordable, and flexible childcare is essential given the gender based occupational segregation of direct and allied healthcare.

  2. Support industry engagement and equitable career pathways across the continuum of care by increasing Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates, investing in Multi-Stakeholder Industry Partnerships to support inclusive career pathways, and encouraging state flexibility to support worker advancement and talent pipelines.

  3. Support nimble industry- and worker-responsive training and tuition assistance by funding integrated education and training to build foundational language and math skills; expanding access to Pell grants for high-quality, short-term training; expanding apprenticeship through the bipartisan PARTNERS Act; passing the Pathways to Healthcare Careers Act to support industry targeted training; and funding training provider capacity.

  4. Ensure healthcare workers and employers can adopt and adapt to new innovations by passing the bipartisan Digital Equity Act, investing in new Digital Literacy Upskilling grants, developing a measurable national standard for industry-specific digital upskilling efforts, expanding access to broadband and high-quality devices, and creating a Healthcare Extension Program to help local providers innovate and adopt new technologies.

  5. Incentivize employer investment in worker training and advancement by passing the bipartisan SKILL UP Act and expanding the Section 127 tuition reimbursement program.

NSC and BLU convened four recovery panels for the following industries:HealthcareManufacturingInfrastructure, and Retail/Hospitality. The Infrastructure panel recently released its recovery proposals and the Manufacturing and Retail/Hospitality panels will release their recommendations in the coming weeks.

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About Futuro Health

Futuro Health improves the health and wealth of communities by growing the largest network of credentialed allied health workers in the nation starting in California. We believe investing in education and skills training and retraining results in better-paying jobs for workers, better service for patients and better workers for employers to hire. Kaiser Permanente and Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) partnered to establish Futuro Health in January 2020 with a $130 million commitment.     

About National Skills Coalition

NSC is a national organization fighting for inclusive, high-quality skills training so that people have access to a better life, and local businesses see sustained growth. We engage in analysis and technical assistance, organizing, advocacy, and communications to improve state and federal skills policies.

About Business Leaders United

Business Leaders United for Workforce Partnerships (BLU) is comprised of employers from a range of industries across the nation who are concerned about our nation’s skills mismatch, who are working with local partners to train and hire community residents for skilled jobs, and who want our country’s policymakers to follow suit and invest – aggressively and effectively – in the skills of America’s workers. BLU provides a common platform from which these diverse business leaders can jointly communicate to national policymakers, the press, and the American public about the effective industry-based strategies they’ve developed which could serve as models for a more comprehensive national skills policy.

Futuro Health Creates Opportunity in Healthcare with Google Career Certificates

For Futuro Health graduate Jamal L., having the support of an assigned Navigator to coach and mentor him through his Health IT Specialist program made all the difference in his pathway to completion. 

“Futuro Health has a program where a mentor can come check on you. The mentor I had during my Futuro Health program was awesome,” he said. “Having a mentor, having a coach is key. Being around a community, a team, or a group can help you get to where you want to go faster, with a lot less bumps in the road.”

Futuro Health’s unique student support services experienced by Jamal will now be made available, tuition-free. Futuro Health is providing 1,000 scholarships for job seekers to take the Google Career Certificates, which prepare people for the in-demand fields of Data Analytics, IT Support, Project Management, and User Experience Design. Futuro Health is also bundling the programs into additional training paths that prepare workers for roles in Healthcare Data AnalyticsHealthcare Project Management, and Health IT.

“We are thrilled Futuro Health is offering scholarships for workers to complete the Google Career Certificates,” said Bronagh Friel, Workforce Development Lead, Grow with Google. “By combining the program with healthcare coursework, they will create additional pathways for students to enter in-demand fields and increase their economic potential.”

The Google Career Certificates are available online through Coursera, and do not require a degree or experience to enroll. On average, they take three to six months to complete. In addition to adding healthcare coursework, Futuro Health further compliments the Google Career Certificates program by providing an instructor-of-record to support student learning, a practice especially important for the needs of students from nontraditional backgrounds.

To support online learning, Futuro Health will apply an engagement strategy using data science to ensure students who would not otherwise enjoy the virtual learning have a higher likelihood of completing. Students selected attend tuition-free, though pay some minimal fees. They will be supported by Futuro Health Navigators who assist students from enrollment to graduation. 

Upon completing, students gain access to Futuro Health’s new Job Search Marketplace, which connects graduates with job opportunities. Graduates of the Google Career Certificate program also gain access to its employer consortium of over 130 companies, including Google, that consider graduates for entry-level roles in the certificate fields.

“Futuro Health is committed to supporting students in their educational journey,” said Futuro Health CEO Van Ton-Quinlivan. “This partnership with Google allows us to expand our program offerings and employment connection services, helping us fulfill our mission of growing the largest network of certified allied health workers in the nation – always with attention to diversity, equity and inclusion.”

The Healthcare Data Analytics program reflects the growing influence of data in the delivery of care and equips students with a professional certificate recognized by Google. Students learn in-demand data analytics skills using spreadsheets, SQL, Tableau, R, and more. Meanwhile, the Healthcare Project Management program, also embedding a certificate developed by Google, trains students in the high-growth field of project management, with an emphasis on improving patient care, reducing costs, and bettering the patient’s overall experience and satisfaction. The new programs are being offered through Coursera, an online learning platform. 

“There’s a perception that careers in healthcare require workers to be medically skilled,” said Matt Williams, Lead Faculty at Futuro Health and former Director of Data, Reporting and Analytics at Sutter Health. “But there are plenty of in-demand data, administrative, and human resources jobs that need qualified people. These new programs help students enter high-paying roles in healthcare that cater to skills outside of the clinical setting.”

Applications for both programs are now being accepted. Interested adults can apply online at www.futurohealth.org.

County of Orange, Orange County Workforce Development Board, Futuro Health Announce Collaboration to Create Opportunity

In partnership with the Orange County Workforce Development Board (OCWDB), the County of Orange (County) has launched a new career initiative with Futuro Health to provide job seeker opportunities in high-demand healthcare occupations.

California’s projected demand for healthcare workers is currently at approximately 500,000 by 2024. Programs to be offered to meet the growing need include the following healthcare careers:

·  Registered Dental Assistant

·  Community Health Worker with Behavioral Health

·  Care Coordinator: Chronically Ill Populations

·  Care Coordinator: Behavioral Health Populations

Through this new initiative, participants registered through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) will have free access to career training opportunities with Futuro Health and services offered through the Orange County One-Stop Center including:

·  Training in healthcare career pathways

·  Opportunities for job placement

·  Workshops on resume writing, interviewing techniques, and 21st-century career skills

·  Access to computers, internet, telephone, copier, fax machines, labor market information, and more

“We know adults are seeking to build skills that position them to move into good healthcare jobs and move up in this essential industry,” said Van Ton-Quinlivan, CEO of Futuro Health. “We’re pleased to join with the county public workforce system to bring opportunity to residents of Orange County through this important partnership.”  

For more information including how to become a WIOA member or register for the program without WIOA status, visit oconestop.com or call the Orange County Economic and Business Recovery Call Center at (714) 480-6500.

The Orange County Development Board, through the Orange County Business Service Center and Orange County One-Stop Center, offers comprehensive services such as hiring assistance, career transition services, and employment services to businesses and job seekers at no cost.

Futuro Health is a non-profit organization focused on improving the health and wealth of communities by growing the largest network of credentialed allied healthcare workers in the nation. Futuro Health believes that investing in education and skills training and retraining results in better paying-jobs for workers, better care for patients, and better workers for employers to hire. For more information on how your local organization can partner with Futuro Health, contact partnership@futurohealth.org

Building Partnerships Across the Public and Private Sectors to Enhance Healthcare Education for Minority Students

Futuro Health Will Serve a Key Role in Consortium For Public Health Information Technology

Futuro Health, along with Cal State Long Beach, has received a $10 million grant to develop culturally relevant public health information technology, including improving COVID-19 data collection and increasing representation of underrepresented communities within the public health IT workforce.

The California Consortium Public Health Informatics and Technology (CCPHIT) Workforce Development Program, led by CSULB, will recruit, train and place more than 700 students in California’s public health workforce.

CCPHIT’s credential pathway will be supported by Futuro Health, a pioneering joint venture of Kaiser Permanente and the California Health Workers Union (SEIU-UHW), which has trained over 4,000 individuals into the workforce in just 18 months. Of these graduates, over 40 percent are Hispanic/Latino and over 20 percent are African American.

“Futuro Health is so pleased to play a catalytic role in forming this multi-system partnership between public institutions and bring more Californians into good healthcare jobs. Our collaboration with CSU Long Beach, UC Berkeley, and a network of community colleges will create opportunity for adults who aspire for good careers and better position the state to address health outcomes,” said Van Ton-Quinlivan, CEO of Futuro Health, and former Executive Vice-Chancellor of the California Community Colleges.

Over the next four years, community college and university partners will develop curriculum geared toward diverse students seeking to attain certifications, and/or associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees. Futuro Health will provide certification programming to equip students with industry recognized skills for those seeking immediate employment and will provide student support services, virtual educational platforms, and previously created curricula. In addition, Futuro Health Navigators will assist prospective students with the enrollment process and/or connect them with the nearest community college or university. Finally, Futuro Health will lead outreach activities to the broader community.

“I am so pleased that this project will form a consortium to collectively provide a high quality and unique educational opportunity for over 700 underserved students on interdisciplinary approaches in public health informatics and technology,” said Professor Kamiar Alaei, Department Chair of Health Science at California State University, Long Beach, and the principal investigator/director for the project. “We have numerous supports from over 26 public health agencies, major hospitals, education providers, community-based agencies and advocacy organizations who have made a commitment in the form of support, resources, expertise, internships, recruiting, outreach and placement efforts.”  

The CCPHIT is a first-of-its-kind collaboration between the CSUs, UCs, community colleges, as well as private organizations to meet California’s growing public health demands. The Department of Health Science will lead CCPHIT in collaboration with the Department of Health Care Administration and main partners from other institutions including UC Berkeley, Cal State East Bay, community colleges such as Bakersfield College and Shasta College, CAL2CAL, Institute for International Health and Education, Futuro Health, and California Department of Public Health.

This grant funding was a result of President Joe Biden’s executive order to establish the COVID-19 Pandemic Testing Board to ensure a sustainable public health workforce. It also coincides with the Biden Administration’s goal to train four thousand individuals on public health informatics and technology, which will also improve the nation’s public health workforce.

Futuro Health Launches New Job Marketplace

Futuro Health is making it easier for students to connect with employers, and for employers to find and hire the qualified healthcare workers they need.  The new Futuro Health Job Marketplace, now available to Futuro Health students and alumni via their portal and welcomes additional employers of healthcare workers. 

“We are attracted to Futuro Health graduates and the value and expertise these workers bring to AlliedUP,” said allied health staffing provider AlliedUP CEO Carey Carpineta. “The Job Search Marketplace allows us to find and hire skilled healthcare individuals who are qualified, well-rounded, and diverse.”

“CommonSpirit Health is proud to partner with Futuro Health to invest in the future of our allied healthcare workforce,” added Wanda Cole-Fieman, Senior Vice President, Talent Acquisition at CommonSpirit Health. “Connecting Futuro Health graduates to job opportunities within CommonSpirit Health is vital to ensuring a highly qualified workforce that is reflective of our communities, in order to improve the health of people we serve.”  In 2019, Dignity Health and Catholic Health Initiatives came together to form CommonSpirit Health.

“To successfully support the millions of workers Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs) – rather than four-year degrees – transition into higher-wage work, we need efforts like Futuro Health’s Job Marketplace to help employers discover and hire STARs based on their skills,” said Scott Gullick, Regional Marketplace Lead – Bay Area, Opportunity@Work. “We applaud Futuro Health as they continue to back efforts that help employers see beyond the degree and connect STARs with the jobs they deserve.”

“Because Futuro Health has a work-ready approach to training and educating adult students, it makes perfect sense to create an environment where Futuro Health students and employers can connect to secure fruitful and successful employment relationships,” said Anthony Dalton, Futuro Health Vice President & Chief Data Scientist.

Healthcare employers who provide a special applicant tracking code can be alerted when Futuro Health’s credentialed students apply through the marketplace.

The features and functionality of the Job Search Marketplace will grow over time.  Students and alumni can access it through the Futuro Health portal.  Interested employers should contact partnership@futurohealth.org.

Care Coordinators: Easing the Burden on America’s Emergency Rooms

For many people in underserved and underinvested communities, the emergency room is the all-in-one provider of healthcare. This presents a multitude of problems for both patient and state. According to data released by UnitedHealth Group, non-emergency visits to the ER add $32 billion a year to national health care costs. Paradoxically, patients who need ongoing, but non-emergency, health care see little benefit from receiving treatments from ERs or urgent cares. This has created a no-win situation in which patients aren’t receiving the care they need, health care costs are skyrocketing, and resources that could close the gap in underserved communities are dwindling. Futuro Health seeks to mitigate this issue by growing the number of Care Coordinators in the workforce to better serve at-risk communities.

“Patients who don’t have access to health care are not being adequately served by ERs, and this problem was particularly evident during the pandemic as COVID-19 patients inundated hospitals everywhere,” said John Cordova, Futuro Health’s Program Director of Allied Health. “Because ERs must prioritize emergency issues, chronically ill or mentally ill patients often wait hours and hours to be seen, and then have no resources once they are discharged. Care Coordinators fill the gap between patients and ERs to not only prevent readmissions but provide ongoing care.”

The Care Coordinator program for chronically ill patients is a relatively new offering at Futuro Health, and focuses on training students to manage patient care and work with patients after they are discharged from the hospital to make follow-up appointments, obtain prescriptions and special equipment, enter therapy, and regulate their health. Care Coordinators are an important asset for chronically ill patients, especially those in underserved communities. Chronically ill patients often struggle to understand the complexities of their conditions and how to effectively prevent symptoms and flare-ups. Care Coordinators not only assist with chronically ill patient care, but also educate patients who have long been lacking the resources and attention to manage and improve their health.

Futuro Health also offers tuition-free scholarship to attend an accredited Care Coordinator program that emphasizes Behavioral Health – helpful training when working with patients who frequent ERs. Furthermore, behavioral health issues have increased during the pandemic, yet there is still a dearth of resources in underserved and disadvantaged communities. In a National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, researchers found that patients can’t find satisfactory outpatient treatment for mental and behavioral health problems and there is no place to continue treatment once released from the ER. Behavioral Health Care Coordinators ensure that the best resources are being used to help the patient get better and promote a patient’s mental well-being when they are in recovery from behavioral, mental, and addictive disorders. 

Futuro Health’s Care Coordinator programs are accepting credentialed allied health workers who are interested in upskilling their talents and learning new interventions in health. Example roles who are eligible from this upskilling include LVNs, LVN leads or trainers; MAs, MA  leads or trainers; counselors; social workers; physical therapists; occupational therapists; speech therapists; respiratory therapists; optometry techs; pharmacy techs; dieticians/nutritionists; dental hygienists; community health workers; and other clinical roles with responsibility for coordinating or administering healthcare. 

Learn more information on Futuro Health Care Coordinator programs.

Community Health Workers Gain Historic Recognition In Governor Newsom’s May Revise

California Governor Gavin Newsom announced his May Revise budget proposal on May 14, outlining the budget projections and expenditure estimates for priority items established in January. Among these items is a prodigious investment in Community Health Workers (CHWs), designating this vital role as a Medi-Cal covered service. 

CHWs have been a proven vehicle in reducing unnecessary ER visits while serving poor and uninsured patients. A clinical trial out of Massachusetts General Hospital found that CHW interventions reduce hospital readmissions and improve preventative care among ‘clinically complex’ patients. Patients who are considered ‘clinically complex’ include people with chronic illnesses or conditions that require ongoing medical attention. Within the 65,000 shortage of allied healthcare workers in California, CHWs are a key asset in helping patients like these, as well as those within underserved and disadvantaged communities.

While the positive impact of CHWs has been recognized, the May Revise tackles an important hurdle that has impeded past CHW investment efforts. The May Revise outlines CHWs as a service that will be reimbursed under Medi-Cal, which will provide an incentive for many clinics and hospitals to hire CHWs to deliver care. This marks an important milestone in enhancing access and addressing barriers to patient health outcomes. Governor Newsom also included other vital patient advocate roles, such as doulas, under Medi-Cal coverage.

According to the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network, CHWs “have lived experience and strong empathy with the diverse communities they serve. CHWs provide vital education and navigation assistance, and can bridge gaps in communication and reduce health and mental health disparities experienced by vulnerable communities in California.”

The investment is great news for those choosing to enter CHW careers, like the students enrolling in Futuro Health’s new program. Futuro Health has advocated for the importance of CHWs and other allied health positions as a means to address racial and societal equity gaps in healthcare. These middle-skill roles are often underinvested, yet represent one of the largest workforce shortages in the state. The May Revise signals growing opportunities for Futuro Health CHW trainees upon program completion. While there exists multiple CHW training options available, Futuro Health is underwriting adults with tuition-free scholarships to attend an accredited program where CHWs gain behavioral health training as part of their credential

For more information on the Community Health Worker Program with Behavioral Health Emphasis at Futuro Health, please visit the Futuro Health catalog