Field of Work: Direct-care workers—nursing assistants, home health aides, and personal care attendants in North Carolina.
Problem Synopsis: Like many other states with a graying population, North Carolina faced a looming shortage in its long-term-care workforce. When Better Jobs Better Care was launched, about 70 percent of the state’s long-term-care workforce was choosing to leave jobs each year.
Synopsis of the Work: From 2003 to 2009, the North Carolina Foundation for Advanced Health Programs worked with a team of stakeholders and consumers to create a voluntary, special state license designed to promote the recruitment and retention of direct-care workers. The coalition also created a website and a set of documents to help long-term care providers in North Carolina and other states apply for the special license. Ten long-time partners were part of the initial Better Jobs Better Care coalition led by the North Carolina Foundation for Advanced Health Programs.
Over the project period, the North Carolina Foundation and its partners:
- Created the North Carolina New Organizational Vision Award (NC NOVA). The voluntary, special state license is awarded to long-term care providers who meet a set of criteria.
- Recruited some 60 providers to participate as pilot sites for the licensure process.
- Developed a website with a set of resources to help North Carolina providers apply for the special license. The team also produced a guide to help other states “jump start” the special licensure process at a lower cost.