Be a Sponsor Site

Home / Be a Sponsor Site

The Health Support Specialist (HSS) program is elevating the status of caregivers and changing the way we serve.

The aging services workforce faces significant challenges. It’s hard to start thinking about investment and big picture goals when you’re dealing with staffing shortages, constant turnover, competing with other local employers and searching for ways to recruit new team members.

But strengthening your dedicated team members isn’t a back-burner priority; it’s a necessity. A strong workforce is the foundation of progress. It’s the muscle that shapes the quality of life for people in your community. It’s your source of ideas and innovation to make your organization better.

Don’t lose sight of the forest getting lost in the trees. Here’s how HSS can help:

Challenge

Solution

Serving more clinically complex people

HSS includes college curriculum that teaches how to care for people holistically, with instruction in culinary care, memory care, environmental services, activities, physiological and psychosocial care. Relevant, on-the-job training requires students to bring that knowledge into their organization and apply it.

Lack of commitment from caregivers

1-2 years = 2,500 hours + 7 courses

Apprentices must be committed in order to succeed and receive wage increases. HSS attracts dedicated individuals who want to stay in older adult services and commit to a career in this field.

Too many silos

HSS breaks down silos by training individuals in every area of resident care. Apprentices cross department lines to understand every aspect of the needs of older adults and are equipped to make better decisions.

Spending money on team members can be risky

HSS is $1,710 per apprentice, which is, most likely, less than you’re spending on turnover each year. HSS is an investment, but if you have the right people, the right coaching and a strong vision, your investment can change the way we care for residents and build a stable, more skilled caregiver workforce.

If you’re eligible, the DHS Nursing Facility Employee Scholarship Program will cover the entire cost of the program.

People don’t respect the caregiving career

HSS ≠ NAR, Advanced NAR or NAR Supervisor.

The Health Support Specialist is a new career in older adult services. Through the program, caregivers become leaders in their organizations while learning how to care for people better. They love what they do, and more importantly, are proud of what they do. They have the confidence and knowledge to speak up and share their training to encourage other team members.

How Does it Work?

Your organization is unique. We understand that. It’s why our Transformation Coaches will work with you one-on-one to develop an implementation plan that works.

Here’s how to get started:

  1. Contact us to set up a meeting with your leadership team to discuss the program
  2. Sign the Health Support Specialist Standards of Apprenticeship
  3. Work with an assigned Transformation Coach to create an effective implementation plan and recruit apprentices for next semester
#mk-icon-box-5a30b84ae2b07 .mk-box-icon-2-icon { font-size:32px; color:#55075b;background-color:#ffffff;border:1px solid #55075b; } #mk-icon-box-5a30b84ae2b07 .mk-box-icon-2-icon:hover{ color:#ffffff;background-color:#55075b;border:1px solid #55075b; }
.full-width-5a30b84adb204 { min-height:100px; padding:55px 0 60px; margin-bottom:0px; } #background-layer--5a30b84adb204 { background-position:left top; background-repeat:repeat; ; } .mk-main-wrapper { display: none; } #theme-page { padding-top:0; }

Site Orientation

Once you’ve signed up as an HSS Sponsor Site, you’ll receive a Transformation Coach and Site Orientation Guide. Your Coach will walk you through the guide, helping you and your team create a customized implementation plan and answering questions along the way.

Download the Site Orientation Guide

Transformation Coaches

Sandy Bensen has enjoyed a rich career in healthcare, spanning from 1968 to the present and includes experience in acute care, older adult services and homecare/hospice. Positions held include the areas of direct care, education, nursing administration, senior executive administration and transformational leadership.

As VP of Senior & Community Services with North Country Health Services (Sanford Health), Bemidji, MN, Sandra provided leadership in strategic initiatives, which culminated in the building of a multi services senior campus, designed and operated in the Household/Person Directed model.

Sandra is a Registered Nurse and a Nursing Home Administrator. Earned degrees include BSN (Winona State University) and MBA (University of St Thomas).

Marilyn Oelfke is a registered nurse with more than 40 years of experience in a variety of settings, the majority of which has been in nursing administration. She retired in 2013 from Perham Living where she served as Senior Director of LTC Services (included role of Director of Nursing) for 24 years. Since that time she has been working part time as a Nursing Consultant with Action Pact of Milwaukee, Wisconsin and as a HSS Consultant for LeadingAge Minnesota.

Marilyn’s passion to transform the LTC facility into a home for the residents led her and the staff of Perham Living on a 12 year journey into deep culture change. She was directly involved in the conversion of a 96 bed facility from a medical model to the household model of care and in the planning and completion of a multi-million dollar rebuild and remodel of the existing 1970’s facility.

.full-width-5a30b84ae3068 { min-height:100px; padding:60px 0 60px; margin-bottom:0px; background-color:#f2f3f1; } #background-layer--5a30b84ae3068 { background-position:left top; background-repeat:repeat; ; } .mk-main-wrapper { display: none; } #theme-page { padding-top:0; } .full-width-5a30b84ae3068 .mk-fancy-title.pattern-style span, .full-width-5a30b84ae3068 .mk-blog-view-all { background-color: #f2f3f1 !important; }

What About Cost?

The cost of the entire HSS program for one apprentice is $1,710 ($190 per credit). Eligible organizations are able to cover the entire cost through the DHS Nursing Facility Employee Scholarship Program.

In addition to tuition, organizations are also required to identify a starting apprentice wage, at least one intermediary wage and a journeyworker wage for when apprentices complete the program. This matrix is customized and unique to your organization and will be designed with Rich Davy from the Minnesota Department of Labor before signing the HSS Standards.

Questions?

Contact us to get started.

.full-width-5a30b84ae58b8 { min-height:100px; padding:60px 0 60px; margin-bottom:0px; } #background-layer--5a30b84ae58b8 { background-position:left top; background-repeat:repeat; ; } .mk-main-wrapper { display: none; } #theme-page { padding-top:0; }

Resources

Download the brochure: Becoming an HSS Sponsor Site

.button-5a30b84ae79de { margin-bottom: 15px; margin-top: 15px; min-width: 0px !important; } .button-5a30b84ae79de { border-color: #ffffff !important; color: #ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae79de:after { background-color:#ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae79de:hover { border-color: !important; color: #55075b !important; } .button-5a30b84ae79de:hover:after { background-color:; } .button-5a30b84ae79de:hover i { color: #55075b; }

Sample job descriptions:

.button-5a30b84ae7ff6 { margin-bottom: 0px; margin-top: 15px; min-width: 0px !important; } .button-5a30b84ae7ff6 { border-color: #ffffff !important; color: #ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae7ff6:after { background-color:#ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae7ff6:hover { border-color: !important; color: #55075b !important; } .button-5a30b84ae7ff6:hover:after { background-color:; } .button-5a30b84ae7ff6:hover i { color: #55075b; }
.button-5a30b84ae8221 { margin-bottom: 15px; margin-top: 15px; min-width: 0px !important; } .button-5a30b84ae8221 { border-color: #ffffff !important; color: #ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae8221:after { background-color:#ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae8221:hover { border-color: !important; color: #55075b !important; } .button-5a30b84ae8221:hover:after { background-color:; } .button-5a30b84ae8221:hover i { color: #55075b; }

Sample wage documents:

.button-5a30b84ae8832 { margin-bottom: 0px; margin-top: 15px; min-width: 0px !important; } .button-5a30b84ae8832 { border-color: #ffffff !important; color: #ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae8832:after { background-color:#ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae8832:hover { border-color: !important; color: #55075b !important; } .button-5a30b84ae8832:hover:after { background-color:; } .button-5a30b84ae8832:hover i { color: #55075b; }
.button-5a30b84ae8a61 { margin-bottom: 15px; margin-top: 15px; min-width: 0px !important; } .button-5a30b84ae8a61 { border-color: #ffffff !important; color: #ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae8a61:after { background-color:#ffffff; } .button-5a30b84ae8a61:hover { border-color: !important; color: #55075b !important; } .button-5a30b84ae8a61:hover:after { background-color:; } .button-5a30b84ae8a61:hover i { color: #55075b; }
.full-width-5a30b84ae66ce { min-height:100px; padding:60px 0 60px; margin-bottom:0px; background-color:#55075b; } #background-layer--5a30b84ae66ce { background-position:left top; background-repeat:repeat; ; } .mk-main-wrapper { display: none; } #theme-page { padding-top:0; } .full-width-5a30b84ae66ce .mk-fancy-title.pattern-style span, .full-width-5a30b84ae66ce .mk-blog-view-all { background-color: #55075b !important; }
Contact Us

Have questions? Send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt