As the Nation Grapples with a Mental and Behavioral Health Crisis, Futuro Health Named by California as a State-Approved Provider to Grow Peer Support Specialists

Starting this July, legislation that passed in 2020 will begin changing how the vulnerable in California’s communities receive care. As outlined in Senate Bill 803 (SB 803), the state will now have established requirements for Peer Support Specialist training programs and set competencies for those workers. With the pandemic exacerbating mental and behavioral health issues, a coordinated approach to growing a paraprofessional workforce is a lesson in how to address a pervasive workforce gap.

SB803 recognizes Peer Support Specialists as a reimbursable service and establishes a statewide set of core competencies for training. The bill also opens the service to an additional reimbursement funding stream beyond billing Medicaid. While this has been a key priority for many Californian organizations and multiple versions of this bill were brought forth in the past, the question of who pays for the service had previously held up the progress of the legislation.

Before this legislation, Peer Support Specialists were hired using soft funds or acted as volunteers. Now that PSS services are reimbursable, financial support of these roles has become more concrete. This will mean that more people can and will use these services, explained John Cordova, RN, PHN, BSN, and Director of Workforce Development & Clinical Partnerships with Futuro Health. “We will see these roles expand in more clinics and community-based organizations and even some of the hospitals,” Cordova said.

Peer Support Specialists have lived experience with the process of recovery from mental health or substance use challenges and provide peer support for others experiencing similar issues. While Peer Support Specialists have existed within healthcare for years, SB 803 went a step further by validating the position and bringing the certification process to the state level.

“They’re better able to engage individuals,” said Lucero Robles, the Quality Assurance and Compliance Director for California Mental Health Services Authority (CalMHSA) of peers providing support to people who are in situations the peers themselves have lived through.

“As a social worker, my knowledge of mental health, the medical model, supporting people in the community, that’s what I bring to the table, but a peer brings their recovery, their journey themselves,” she said. “They’re using a lot of themselves in this.”

As Cordova explains, a PSS has the lived experience to tell someone in crisis that they know and understand what they are going through. A counselor can tell a patient to stop using drugs, but a former drug user can speak to their specific life experience. Lived experience is a key component in trauma-informed care for trauma like drug or alcohol abuse, and domestic violence.

Pandemic Causes Spike in Anxiety and Depression, Statista, 2022

The legislation will be fully implemented starting this summer, which comes at a time when the entire country is feeling the strain of two years of a pandemic, oftentimes at the cost of our mental health.

“The pandemic has been emotionally taxing on every person,” said Robles, who notes that there is and always has been a need for trained paraprofessionals in the field of behavioral health.

As the country also faces a national healthcare worker shortage with employers paying 2-3 times the cost for certain temporary traveler staff, nonprofit Futuro Health has uniquely stepped up to the plate to skill up more trained diverse workers. Futuro Health makes education journeys into allied health career possible by growing the talent that employers need and creating a path to opportunity that workers want. With the implementation of SB803, Futuro Health is going a step further to train Peer Support Specialists as one of the newly announced state-approved providers of this training – set to launched July 1st on the California Services Mental Health Authority website.

Policy and Best Practices Combine to Grow Much Needed Trained Workers

Not only is this legislation an opportunity to address existing healthcare workforce shortages but it is a reflection that peers bring value and experience to the table, said Toby Ewing, Executive Director, California Mental Health Services and Oversight Commission.

Ewing said that while it has been a struggle for years to build an adequate network of services, it has pushed the state to think more creatively about how we define care. Ewing said the legislation shows the state is embracing the perspective that lived experience is important – something the California Mental Health Services and Oversight Commission agrees with and will build upon. Ewing also emphasized that SB 803 ensures certification meets a standardized level of training.

In November 2021, the California Mental Health Services Authority (CalMHSA) and County Mental Health Plans scoped how SB 803 would be implemented. SB 803 established 17 core competencies for Peer Support Specialists. Instead of 58 behavioral health plans for each county, there will now be one standardized process across the state. Experts agree this standardization is key to streamlining the process for training providers. The Department of Health Care Services took the lead in establishing statewide training standards expected from the vendors chosen to provision the curricula.

Futuro Health Incorporates Workforce Best Practices to Ready the Future of Care

Futuro Health, having supported over 5,000 diverse adults tuition-free in pursuing their education for in-demand allied health roles including Medical Assistants, Health IT Specialists, and Patient Care Representatives, was named a state-approved training provider for Peer Support Specialist Certification. Futuro Health’s PSS online offering will include immediate start dates, rapid registration, and off-hour schedules, which will appeal to working adults, Cordova explained.

Futuro Health’s workforce solutions also combine adult-friendly education journeys, live touchpoints, and a scale that meets the state’s expansive geography. Eighty percent of Futuro Health’s students are ethnically diverse, averaging 30 years in age with 51% speaking more than one language.

“The pandemic expanded quality online education and virtual student support options that can be bundled in novel ways to develop interpersonal and technical skills,” said Van Ton-Quinlivan, CEO of Futuro Health. “Futuro Health and our partners combine best practices in workforce development so that employers and states can plug-and-play to accelerate their own endeavors.”

Futuro Health invites education institutions with online and hybrid degree offerings associated with in-demand mental and behavioral health roles to collaborate in building out career paths for upward mobility. Interested education institutions can email


All month, in honor of National Women’s History month, we have asked our followers to share a story of a woman who has made an impact on their life.  Here are just a few of the response amazing responses we received! *

"A woman who is important to me and inspired me is my mother-in-law. At the age of 16 she was a teen mom and had three jobs all while still being a mother. It's so impressive to me how a person could do that and the only thing that kept her going was her kids. She immigrated from Puebla, Mexico in 1992, and she's been working hard for her kids ever since. She is such a great woman who deserves the world and more."
- Griselda R.
"My mother is one woman who IMPACTED me in so many ways. My mother had an arranged marriage when she was only 17 years old. She was born in raised in Cambodia. During the time she was 19 years old. The Vietnam War started, and the genocide started in Cambodia. Unknowingly, she and my father had to evacuate her village to escape from being killed. Sadly, she was captured with my father and forced into a Labor Camp. She sadly witnessed many people killed. Luckily for her, two weeks before she and my father were scheduled to be killed, they were able to escape. As the bomb was dropping, her eyesight was damaged. So now, even at 68 years old, she operates her life with distorted sights. We took her to the doctor, they said, there’s nothing to be done."
- Anonymous
"The resiliency my mother has shown and overcame gives me great hope and determination to keep pushing. Also, to not give up so easily. Even at her worst time as a child and probably the PTSD she faced she still kept going, smiling, laughing, and even raised all nine of us kids. She is a woman who I admire, I am honored to be her child."
- Sopy C.
"My aunt, Kim, has made a huge impact in my life since the day I was born. She brightens the room and has such a huge heart. She is always willing to help people. Growing up I didn’t have stable parents, so my aunt was always there for me no matter what. She is the reason why I want to succeed in life and push hard for me and my little family. I’ll cherish her forever. She’s a hard worker, dedicated, strong woman and one day I hope I can be just like her."
- Serina C.
"The most important woman in my life would be my mother, Guadalupe. My mother has struggled throughout her lifetime to support her children. My mother has always worked to have food on the table and clothes on our bodies. My mother has made it all by herself, since my father was not present. My mother has done an amazing job."
- Gloria G.
"The women who have made a real impact in my life would be my late grandmother, or as I knew her as “Nana boo” and my mother. My nana always made sure that I understood the value of family and to always be true to myself. She told me to never apologize for anything that I do in my life and make sure to take each lesson as a blessing and learn from that. My mother is also a very important woman in my life. Her resilience, kind nature and truth telling ways have shaped me into the woman I am now. My mom has overcome some of the most difficult times in her life with one thing in mind always. To always be her authentic self and live life on her own terms. Seeing her live this way inspired not only me but others around her as well to know that even though we get caught up with life, to always live it to the fullest."
- Alisha G.
"My grandma, who passed away this winter. She was 93 overcame cancer and chemo every day at 85. She came to America in the 60s with five children in tow while her husband ran the track circuit for the Olympic track team. She then started an Asian import store to share her culture. She respected and made deep friendships. Created a huge, loving family. She also took classes at 90 so that she could lead a Bible study for other widows. She was an amazing woman."
- Josh M.
"As a woman, women take on a big role in many things, such as being a mother, sister, or sibling. We take very important things in life, and even if there’s something stressful in life, we always manage to do it and be strong. Someone who inspires me in so many ways would be my mother. My mother is a very funny, positive, and caring person because she showed me how to do many things for myself, such as cooking, sewing, and making traditional things. Not only for myself, but also to learn how to assist others. I learned so much from her that it enabled me to be self-sufficient and focus solely on helping others. She’s the best person, and I really love her."
- Brianna F.
"The most important woman who I always looked up to and as well help raised me was my grandma. She was the glue to our family. Always put her family first no matter what the situation was. She taught from what is right and what is wrong. She showed me how to cook, clean, and to care for others. If my grandma never got sick, I feel she would have still been here and unfortunately our family would have been closer than what it is. What she taught me will always stick with me from all of our traditions and pass on to my daughters and hopefully to their kids someday."
- Anonymous
"Myself and my daughter. I’ll been a single mom for the last 12 years raising an amazing young woman now. My daughter’s name is Mariana; a strong intelligent and great support for myself to work and educated myself, as a single mother she supported me to keep pushing to be and be better in life."
- Mariana B.
"My mother arrived to the USA at age 18 and still struggles to speak, write and communicate in English. Growing up, in elementary school, my sister and I attended a bilingual school of English and Spanish. Until we had to move districts to a full English school. I found this transitioning process difficult for me because at my previous school I only learned Spanish. My mother encouraged me to continue and never to give up. Later in middle school I noticed that having Spanish knowledge benefited me in many ways. The first was to speak to my elders. Second, I was able to be my parents’ translator. Third, make my school time for becoming a medical assistant easier. And, finally, be able to have a job like Kaiser Permanente that praise their employees with an incentive for being bilingual. I would have not been able to do this without my mother’s support and drive. I am grateful for my mother for educating me to be the independent individual I am now. Thank you, mom!"
- Dulce PC
"To the young woman staring at those white apartment walls which have been tinged with toxic multi-generational must: Keep aspiring for your life beyond that window. The Social Determinants of Health are part of your fight but do not forget that YOU ARE IMPORTANT. ~ future you."
- Alicia J.

*Responses have been edited for grammar and clarity.

Futuro Health CEO Recognized as Workforce Development Hero

Van Ton-Quinlivan named as “Workforce Hero” for making life-changing differences through innovation.

[Sacramento, CA] —National Association of Workforce Development Professionals (NAWDP) recognized Futuro Health CEO Van Ton-Quinlivan among national leaders who have stepped up to the challenge during the pandemic and developed innovative services for helping others find jobs and support. 

“Workforce development plays an important role in driving economic growth through assisting individuals financially struggling and looking for help navigating the roadblocks of gaining sustainable employment,” states Melissa Robbins, CEO of NAWDP, in a press release about the awards.  “Everyday workforce development professionals touch the lives of those seeking employment and a new life. The National Association of Workforce Development Professionals thought it was time to recognize these hardworking, dedicated and skilled individuals.” 

Ton-Quinlivan’s experience span the private, public and nonprofit sectors. She served as the executive vice-chancellor of the California Community Colleges, the nation’s largest higher education system of 116 colleges, where she grew public investments in career education significantly to develop the skilled workers needed by regional economies. Today, her leadership as CEO of Futuro Health has led the organization to address the allied health worker shortage, weaving together best practices in creative ways. Example occupations range from medical assistants, sterile processing technicians, patient care representatives, health IT technicians, to telehealth coordinators and more. Futuro Health’s students are 80% ethnically and racially diverse, 73% female, an average age of 30, and 51% are bilingual. 

In the two years since Futuro Health’s launch in 2020, over 5,000 diverse adults have enrolled in an education path leading to a healthcare credential of value to employers. “During a moment in time when post-secondary enrollment dramatically dropped across the country, we seek to connect people with economic opportunity by easing them back into higher education in adult-friendly ways,” states Ton-Quinlivan. 

Futuro Health’s innovative approach in workforce development has been covered by NPR, Forbes, The Job, The Evolllution, Univisionand other publications and podcasts. 

NAWDP is an organization dedicated to providing education, resources, and certifications to individuals seeking to thrive as leaders in the workforce development industry. Its Workforce Heroes award recognizes the diligent and dedicated professionals who make a difference in their communities and advance the workforce industry. Download a full list of the 2021 Workforce Development Heroes at the NAWDP website

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 make education journeys into allied health careers possible by growing the talent that employers need and creating a path to opportunity that workers want. For more information on best practices in workforce development, visit

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

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.”


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.


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.


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

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 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