Are you prepared to support Older Americans Month?

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This month, May, is Older Americans Month.  The proclamation came from the President and included the traditional reasons we celebrate Older Americans:  Their efforts and very lives are what make our country, our families and most of us personally what we are today.

The theme for this year’s focus is on preventing injury and promoting health, “Safe Today, Healthy Tomorrow.”  For most seniors this starts with staying active and maintaining mobility and independence as long as possible.  For those with some impairments already, preventing accidents from falls (safety today) is one of the most important things to ensure healthier futures.  Good lighting, handrails and bathroom grab bars are crucial elements in fall prevention.

Everyone in health and senior care should know how to assist in fall prevention as well as understand a wide range of safety topics and skills.  Training in this area is so crucial.  Are you and your team members well trained in this area?  Are you ready to help celebrate this month with the Older Americans in your acquaintance?

We can help!  Contact us for a free preview of the Fall Prevention courses we offer online , through DVD training and for CEU credit if you’re an Administrator, nurse, social worker or CSA.

How you can fill the need for caregiver education and support

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It’s on the near horizon.  In some places it’s already here.  It’s the aging phenomena that will result in such a massive growth in the senior population that existing caregiving networks will be swamped.  As always, families will step into the gap and will have to fill caregiving needs, putting new pressure on employers to accommodate these needs while continuing to meet productivity demands.

Canada has taken action to support family caregivers by passing Bill-21, which gives workers the right to take up to eight weeks of protected leave to care for a family member “with a serious medical condition diagnosed by a qualified health practitioner.”  This bill recognizes that family caregiving is a real and growing need, and an essential pillar to supporting our growing elderly population.

From the employer perspective, supporting family caregivers is good business.  It may become essential to maintaining a high level of productivity into the future.  Offering resources, caregiver training and even employer-subsidized in home care to employees may just be the wave of the future.  At a recent conference on the future of an aging America, the Milken Institute Global Conference 2014, panelist Michael Hodin,managing partner at High Lantern Group spoke of his conviction that employers of the future will need to support their workers with eldercare needs.  According to a Forbes article, Hodin said, “I am convinced that, in the next several years, eldercare will be what childcare was in the ‘70s and ‘80s.  Companies that begin designing benefits programs to facilitate this will be very competitive.”

Agencies who currently offer eldercare services are uniquely poised to help both individuals and employers prepare for these needs.  One key element is to ensure that your organization is known in your community as a strong resource for families in need of caregiving support, both from a care perspective and simply from an informational perspective.  Get involved in community discussions about coming eldercare needs; offer information freely and widely to community groups and employers.  When the need for better support systems and services arise you’ll be top of mind – and your business will soar to the top, too.

New Patient Health Navigator and Community Health Worker Training

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The Institute for Professional Care Education (IPCed), an Oregon based company that provides healthcare training, both online and through DVD and print resources throughout the U.S. and Canada, announced the launch of two new training programs. The Patient Health Navigator and the Community Health Worker training programs are both designed to help healthcare organizations better meet the goals of healthcare reform through a focus on supporting and improving individual health literacy and behavior.

The Patient Health Navigator training program is an 80 hour fully online course, newly approved by Oregon Health Authority as an initial training program for use by Coordinated Care Organizations and others throughout the state. IPCed provides an instructor who supports online students throughout the program and who evaluates two Student Directed Projects which are required for program completion. IPCed is currently providing this training program to employees of Oregon hospitals and other healthcare organizations.

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Visiting Angels endorses IPCed Dementia Care Training

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Living Assistance Services, Inc. (Visiting Angels), a national private duty network of home care agencies, has selected the Institute for Professional Care Education (IPCed) as a preferred vendor to host and deliver Visiting Angels Dementia Care certification training using its proprietary learning management system. In addition to the specialty certification program, the preferred vendor relationship with IPCed will enable Visiting Angels to make cost effective state compliance training opportunities available to franchise owners who choose to purchase IPCed’s training programs.

Visiting Angels and IPCed share the philosophy that caregiver training is vital to providing quality care and excellent in-home care services. Known as “America’s Choice in Homecare”, Visiting Angels continues to drive innovation to ensure the best in training and support. With Visiting Angels Dementia Care certification, caregivers will receive ten hours of focused IPCed interactive training to sharpen skills and knowledge and, ultimately, improve care at home.

“We applaud Visiting Angels for taking this leadership position and addressing Dementia Care training with a unique certification,” says Sharon K. Brothers, MSW, CEO of IPCed. “We’re an education company dedicated to providing caregiving professionals with training and resources that help them to be the best caregivers possible. Partnering with Visiting Angels gives us the opportunity to support many caregivers throughout the US and Canada and improve the quality of care.”

“We are very impressed with IPCed’s content, delivery system and great customer service and have found a partner that shares our common goals,” says Bonnie Reid, Director of Program Development. “We are excited to launch our Dementia Care certification program at our annual show in June and to also be able to provide our franchisees access to IPCed’s state compliance training programs.”


About Visiting Angels:
Visiting Angels is a National, private duty network of home care agencies with over 480 locations coast to coast. We are proud to be the nation’s leading provider of non-medical senior home care services. Our Angels provide in-home care, elder care, respite care, senior personal care, elderly care and companion care services. With our senior home care services, elderly adults can continue to live independently in their own homes. For more information about Visiting Angels, please call 800.365.4189 or visit us on the web at

About Institute for Professional Care Education, LLC:
The Institute for Professional Care Education ( provides engaging, interactive, easy to use training courses for the long-term care industry, both online and in DVD formats. IPCed specializes in initial and ongoing training for caregivers working in home care, assisted living and community-based care as well as continuing education for care professionals including nurses, social workers, administrators, and nursing assistants. IPCed was founded by people who know caregiving and who understand how crucial education and training are to running a first-class quality business. IPCed’s team knows that effective, engaging training is essential – for delivering quality care and building a solid, sustaining business.

Getting your Team onboard the e-learning Train

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Are you new to online training?  Maybe not you, personally, but maybe your organization is one of the hundreds that are moving from traditional inservice training (you know the style:  offer food to get them there, try to keep their attention for an hour, reward them with a paycheck at the end) to an online training system.

The advantages of moving online are crystal clear:  you save tons of time in paperwork and record-keeping; your team members access what you’ve assigned them based on their roles, client assignments or personal growth needs.  Everyone wins while you save money and improve the quality of your workforce.  Oh, and there’s the whole huge win in reduced turnover which is the reason more and more folks are dialing our number daily.  Lose your best caregivers and your reputation will soon follow…right out the door.

So you’ve decided to join the movement to online.  How do you get your entire team on board?  How do you get them excited about this new training program?

If you’re smart you’ll do a whole lot more than just make assignments.  You’ll strategize a roll-our approach that will get people thinking the whole online training program was their idea, or at least was one of your better ideas for bringing them more benefits and tools to advance.

There’s a great article in the Business to Community website titled “Marketing your eLearning Initiative:  Finding Your Champions.”

In this article the author, an e-learning professional, shares tips and suggestions for getting everyone on the e-learning train by identifying and rewarding those on your team who can become champions – cheerleaders, really – for the whole process.

Just like in high school, the author remarks, employee groups tend to follow leaders.  They look to see what the “popular kids” – in the workplace, the employees who have solid connections with the most other workers – are doing.  With some great role leadership, the entire team can more quickly and enthusiastically embrace change and become excited about the new opportunities that online training presents to them.

Key activation strategies for your new champions?

  • Involve champions early in your eleaming program rollout
  • Have champions demonstrate the learning management system and courses
  • Include champion testimonials and stories in your marketing
  • Encourage champions to share objectives and benefits of elearning with new hires.”

Home Instead endorses IPCed as preferred CAREGiver training vendor

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Home Instead, Inc. (“Home Instead”), the largest in-home non-medical care franchisor in the US, has endorsed the Institute for Professional Care Education (IPCed) as a preferred vendor for online CAREGiver training in a new initiative to make state compliance training opportunities available to franchise owners who choose to purchase IPCed’s training programs.

Home Instead has long been a leader in the home care industry by providing its franchise owners training programs which are unique to the home care industry to use, in turn, with their CAREGivers. In addition to its required and personal care training programs, Home Instead’s specialized Alzheimer’s Disease or Other Dementias CARE: Changing Aging through Research and Education® program offers classroom training in basic and advanced skills to help CAREGivers manage behaviors commonly associated with this condition.

Beyond these training programs, Home Instead has been seeking a preferred vendor to provide state specific, required training. Home Instead partnered with IPCed to make this state training available to its franchise owners because it shares a passion to help nurture in-home providers to be the best they can be. This additional training will help to strengthen CAREGivers by providing them an opportunity to enhance their skills, which ultimately benefits the Home Instead Senior Care® network’s clients.

“IPCed’s passion comes through clearly both in its approach to training and in the content it provides,” says Kay Shields, Director of Training for Home Instead. “We both believe that having a well trained workforce is vital both to providing quality care as well as building a strong organization.”

IPCed’s leadership adds, “We couldn’t be more pleased with this new relationship,” says Sharon K. Brothers, MSW, CEO of IPCed. “We’re a company dedicated to providing caregiving professionals with training and resources that help them to be the best caregivers possible. Partnering with Home Instead gives us the opportunity to support many caregivers throughout the US and Canada.”

The Institute for Professional Care Education is a training and certification company focusing exclusively on the elder care population. The company includes the widely utilized aQuire Training Solutions division of online courses, Medifecta Healthcare Training for DVD and instructor resources and for nationally accredited continuing education courses for leadership level professionals in the field.

“Our company has experienced explosive growth in the past few years,” notes Brothers, “due in part to a growth in the caregiving needs of the country, but also due to our strong reputation in the field of training and certification. Families and caregiving professionals recognize that training excellence is essential to getting the level of care they want for their loved ones and their clients.”

Home Instead recently received the Best in Category – Senior Care Franchises honor in the annual Franchisee Satisfaction Awards from Franchise Business Review in recognition of its strong franchisee satisfaction ratings. Home Instead currently has more than 1,000 franchise locations in the US, Canada, Japan, Portugal, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Taiwan, Switzerland, Germany, South Korea, Finland, Austria, Italy, the Netherlands, Mexico and China. Among the reasons for Home Instead’s high satisfaction ratings by its franchise owners was its “world class education and training,” according to the market research company.

Partnering with IPCed will help to ensure that Home Instead continues to be a leader in the industry and a leader in care excellence.

About Home Instead Senior Care: Founded in 1994 in Omaha, Nebraska, by Lori and Paul Hogan, the Home Instead Senior Care network is the world’s leading provider of non-medical in-home care services for seniors, with more than 1,000 independently owned and operated franchises providing more than 50 million hours annually of care throughout the United States and 17 additional countries. Local Home Instead Senior Care offices employ more than 65,000 CAREGivers worldwide who provide basic support services – assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), personal care, medication reminders, meal preparation, light housekeeping, errands, incidental transportation and shopping – which enable seniors to live safely and comfortably in their own homes for as long as possible. In addition, CAREGivers are trained in the network’s groundbreaking Alzheimer’s Disease or Other Dementias CARE: Changing Aging Through Research and Education® Program to work with seniors who live with these conditions. This world class curriculum is also available free to family caregivers online or through local Home Instead Senior Care offices. Learn more at

For more information about the Home Instead Senior Care network and its services, contact Dan Wieberg at or 888.484.5759.

About Institute for Professional Care Education, LLC: The Institute for Professional Care Education ( provides engaging, interactive, easy to use training courses for the long-term care industry, both online and in DVD formats. IPCed specializes in initial and ongoing training for caregivers working in home care, assisted living and community-based care as well as continuing education for care professionals including nurses, social workers, administrators, and nursing assistants. IPCed was founded by people who know caregiving and who understand how crucial education and training are to running a first-class quality business. IPCed’s team knows that effective, engaging training is essential – for delivering quality care and building a solid, sustaining business. Learn more at

For more information about IPCed contact Jennifer Waldron, or toll free at 877.843.8374.

Caregiving for Alzheimer’s – and Training for Alzheimer’s Care

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Alzheimer’s disease has been in the news a lot recently.  First, we learned that the problem may be many times greater than currently reported since cause of death is often identified as something other than Alzheimer’s, even when that is the primary diagnosis of the individual.  Getting a new perspective on the scale of this problem today and the nearly inconceivable scale of it in the future will hopefully provide some much-needed impetus for funding and focus on better intervention, medication to delay advance and ultimately on a cure.

In the news as well has been new advances in understanding the nature of the disease, from how it changes the brain to how it seems to affect the functioning of some individuals far more significantly than others, even though they have similar brain changes.

Today a news story was posted on titled “For Caregivers, Alzheimer’s Can be a Life Sentence.” The article starts by describing some work done by Mary Mittelman of NYU’s School of Medicine to “give families and people with Alzheimer’s…a sense of normalcy,” and continues to describe the experience of the more than 15 million family caregivers.

Supporting those who care for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease has long been a focus of mine personally, as well as a focus for our training programs here at IPCed.  Professionally, I’ve been involved in this field for over 30 years.  I continue to volunteer as a family support group facilitator for my local community hospital, talking to those exact individuals described in this story and hearing their pain – and their joy – on a monthly basis.

Stories include that of the 60+ year old woman who recently married someone she believed would be her companion into later life, traveling and experiencing these “golden years” together.  Now, she’s the primary caregiver for her husband with rapidly advancing dementia.  She feels cheated; unsure whether she’ll even be able to stick it out with him.

Other stories include a new group member who is also caring for a husband with recently diagnosed dementia.  She says, “He’s my best friend.  Even if we weren’t married, I’d be caring for him or helping him with whatever he needed.”

As family and professional caregivers learn skills through training classes, both formal and informal, they find easier ways to navigate the most common challenges of communication and daily care.  They understand better the disease and the progression as they get more confident that they’re doing “the right thing” and the guilt of constantly second-guessing their actions fades away.

Caregiving CAN be incredibly challenging.  At the end of the day, however, those caregivers who better understand the disease and have learned better skills often say, “There’s nothing else I’d rather be doing.”

To learn more about IPCed’s caregiver training for persons with Alzheimer’s disease please contact a Training Specialist for a FREE PREVIEW of training courses.

New Content Partnership

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March 21, 2014 – ePath Learning, Inc., a leader in cloud-based learning services, proudly announces a new learning content partner, the Institute for Professional Care Education (IPCed). IPCed provides engaging online training content for the Senior Care industry that meets state and federal compliance requirements. IPCed offers a wide range of training topics from basic and advanced caregiving skills to Alzheimer’s and dementia care, safety, first aid, and medication management, to name but a few. ePath Learning will deliver IPCed’s content through its award-winning Learning Management System (LMS), ePath Learning ASAP.

“We are pleased to partner with ePath Learning and provide an additional platform to deliver our online caregiver training programs that improve quality of care” said Sharon Brothers, MSW, Chief Executive Officer at IPCed. “Our programs meet an important industry need by simplifying compliance training for home care, home health and assisted living facilities. ePath Learning’s technology platform is a great fit for IPCed courseware and we look forward to working together to help improve caregiver skills throughout senior care industry.”

“We recognize that there are profound changes happening in today’s healthcare landscape. As our nation’s population ages, more seniors are choosing to stay home rather than moving to nursing facilities. The senior care industry is exploding with growth, and training this influx of new senior care givers is of paramount importance” stated Donna Lord, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, ePath Learning, Inc. “We’re pleased to be able to offer IPCed content to meet the growing needs of our client base, particularly those looking to expedite their senior care training initiatives.”

About ePath Learning:
ePath Learning develops innovative, world-class software applications that improve training and human performance for organizations. Its portfolio of corporate learning services includes cloud-based learning portals, enterprise social networking technology, and custom eLearning development services. For more information, call us today at 908 722-6622, or go online to

ePath Learning is a registered trademark and ePath Learning ASAP is a service mark of ePath Learning, Inc.

How to Avoid OSHA Fines

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Number 1 on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s list of low hanging fruit for citations is documentation.

OSHA is a significant contributor to the federal income stream… bringing in more money than they spend due to all the citations they issue.

Part of an OSHA inspector’s performance evaluation is actually based on the quantity of citations they write!

OSHA has huge incentives to find all sorts of fun ways to write you up and ruin your day. But take a deep breath because there are some great resources available to ensure that your company and employees are all on the same page and well protected from pesky OSHA inspectors and their strict citation. Fees can often be reduced and even waived if you fix a citation voluntarily as soon as possible and communicate with your inspectors.

Keeping your records of documentation, aka recordkeeping, in order is just as important. Some records have to be kept for 30 years after an employee’s departure from your company such as HIV/AIDS and TB tests – initial and annual!

Documentation includes writing up the content of the material covered, the regulation number, and the date and signature of the person who completed the task. Everything from monthly fire extinguisher checks to emergency planning to procedures on cleaning hazardous substances – if you think to yourself, “Should I document this?” then you should probably document it. That brings me to this week’s Insider Tip.

Insider Tip: you can actually call your local OSHA office and ask them questions – the best part is you don’t even have to reveal who you are. They are happy to help you and answer your questions; with this trick, you can get the answer you need, protect yourself from citations, and correct your method if you discover you’ve been doing something wrong. For extra safety from citations, make a note of who you spoke to, the date you spoke to them, and record that note in your documentation. That way, if an auditor goes through your records, they’ll know exactly why you documented something the way you did, giving you an extra boost on compliance protection!

Remember to document, because if it wasn’t documented, it didn’t happen!

Family Caregiver Training in Oklahoma (and on IPCed)

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Today I’m sending a shout-out to Julie DelCour, a journalist for the Tulsa World who wrote an article published March 16, 2014 titled “An army of caregivers with no basic training.”

DelCour points out that Oklahoma has over 600,000 family caregivers, which is more than the entire active-duty US army.

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