A new bill from Sen. Audrey Gibson For some health care workers, increased training on dementia and Alzheimer’s would be required.

The legislation (SB 634), filed last week, would require some nursing homes, home health care providers, hospices, assisted living facilities, and adult daycare workers to complete at least an hour of Dementia training approved by the Department of Elder Affairs within 30 hours of starting work days.

Current law requires that all employees at these facilities receive “basic written information about interacting with people with Alzheimer’s disease or an associated disorder” when they begin their work. Current law also requires that people who work closely with Alzheimer’s patients receive an hour of training about the disease.

Gibson’s proposal would require employees who work directly with Alzheimer’s patients – or patients with related disorders – to complete at least 3 hours of approved training. The training must include an overview of Alzheimer’s disease, information on related diseases and patient-centered care, and information on dementia-related behavior.

The bill would also require some nurses to receive 4 hours of approved training on the subject every year.

The proposed legislation would also strip providers of their licenses if their employees do not complete the training.

Other measures in the bill would require the Department of Elder Affairs to develop a curriculum for training or to approve a separate training program. The department would also need to keep a list of people who are approved to lead the training.

In order to complete the training, providers would need to achieve a certain number of points for an assessment for each subject area included in the training.

An identical invoice (HB 309) was filed in the house of Rep. Cord Byrd on Tuesday. The 2021 legislative session starts on March 2nd.