State Plans To Increase In-Home Care Providers In West Virginia

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The demand for in-home care providers in West Virginia is on the rise. 

The West Virginia Department of Education is working to meet that demand.

The department has teamed up with the state's Bureau of Senior Services and private and for-profit health agencies to develop a competency-based test for direct care workers. They can work in a home or community settings.

Forty students from schools in Cabell, Logan, Wayne and Wyoming counties are the first students in the state to become certified as direct-care workers.

State Schools Superintendent Jim Phares says West Virginia will need more than 20,000 paid in-home care providers for elders by 2018. He says 5,000 direct-care positions already are unfilled because of a lack of qualified applicants.