More than 120 members of the HCAOA Georgia Chapter met recently to get federal updates from HCAOA, state legislative updates from the Chapter’s advocacy leaders, and information about several issues impacting the home care industry from key state officials. Commissioner of Labor Mark Butler spoke to the Chapter, noting that even though Georgia unemployment rates are the lowest they’ve been since before the pandemic, he is aware of the dire situation as home care agencies struggle to hire caregivers to provide care and services to seniors and people with disabilities in their homes. Local media covered the Commissioner’s visit with the chapter, and interviewed Chapter Legislative Chair Dave Lamb, who stressed just how critical this workforce shortage is because people’s health and safety at home depends on agencies being able to provide care.
“We can’t just put a sign on the door and say ‘we can’t help you today’ because we don’t have enough staff,” Lamb told the reporter.
Representatives from the Georgia Department of Community Health provided updates on EVV compliance and the Rap Back Fingerprinting program. Michelle Robinson, Director of the Healthcare Facility Regulation Division, discussed several licensure issues, and Catherine Ivy, Deputy Executive Director, Service Delivery & Administration, assured providers that the Georgia Elderly & Disabled Waiver Amendment would include the recent Medicaid rate increase retroactively.