Governor Ducey Invests $6.5 Million For Health Care Professional Training

News Release

May 6, 2022

Funds Will Recruit and Train 1,500 Workers In Long-Term Care Facilities

PHOENIX — Governor Doug Ducey is investing $6.5 million to train 1,500 nursing professionals and caregivers who work in long-term care facilities, a major step in improving care for vulnerable Arizonans.

The Governor announced the effort as he recognized Arizona Nurses Month with a proclamation. 

“As we recognize our invaluable nurses, I’m pleased to help Arizona’s dedicated health care professionals have the resources they need to provide quality care,” said Governor Ducey. “Caregivers and nursing professionals work to provide the best care possible to our elderly and disabled citizens. We need more of them and I’m confident this funding will continue to ensure Arizona is the best place for nurses.”

The Arizona Health Care Association will use the funds to recruit, train and place certified nursing assistants (CNA) and caregivers within skilled nursing facilities and assisted living centers throughout the state.

The training efforts by the AHCA will help to address the health care industry’s need for frontline workers. The AHCA will work with skilled nursing facilities and assisted living centers to establish onsite CNA and caregiver training. All training programs will align with the Arizona State Board of Nursing and the Nursing Care Institution Administrator Board.

“The Arizona Health Care Association is pleased to usher in this important statewide workforce development grant to support long term care facilities in their effort to recruit, train and retain essential staff,” said David A. Voepel, Executive Director of the Arizona Health Care Association. “Staffing is critical in ensuring quality outcomes for the vulnerable population we serve. This additional funding will go a long way in meeting that challenge. We appreciate Governor Ducey recognizing the need for this program.”

The funds are allocated from the American Rescue Plan Act. 

Arizona was recently ranked as one of the top states for nurses, noted for its bountiful job opportunities. 

BACKGROUND

Governor Ducey signed legislation on March 25 extending until January 1, 2023 the temporary professional licenses of more than 2,000 critical health care workers.

Governor Ducey’s fiscal year 2023 budget plans to invest $25.7 million in a public-private partnership with Creighton University to expand the Accelerated Nursing Academy and train 300 new nurses by 2030.

In 2021, Governor Doug Ducey announced $60 million to support staffing at health care facilities that deploy proven techniques to decrease COVID-19 related hospitalizations, including administering monoclonal antibody treatments and offering vaccination at discharge. 

In 2020, the Governor announced an investment of $25 million to bolster hospital staffing and reward frontline medical workers for their dedication to protecting fellow Arizonans. The funding was used to pay for higher staff costs due to current demand and allow hospitals to reward their existing direct care employees with bonuses. The Governor also directed an additional $60 million to provide more staffing at Arizona hospitals.