To close the skills gap in Colorado’s healthcare workforce, NextStep Interactive announced last week the launch of an ambitious new training programme.
Approved by the Colorado Board of Nursing to operate in the state, the company is launching a pilot to provide on-demand certification courses for working adults looking to train as certified nursing assistants.
NextStep Interactive is a startup which helps displaced workers retrain for fast-growing careers in the healthcare sector.
Chris Hedrick, founder and CEO of NextStep Interactive, said: “As Colorado faces a major shortage of skilled healthcare workers, communities need access to high quality, low cost and convenient training and job placement options.
“We’re working hand-in-hand with long term care and senior living providers to meet the needs of healthcare employers and aspiring healthcare professionals alike. We chose Colorado as our pilot state because of the tremendous openness of innovation here both in business and in government.”
Healthcare jobs growing faster than any other sector
With an aging US Population, healthcare jobs are growing at significantly faster rates than the broader economy.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, six out of ten of the fastest growing jobs in the United States are in the healthcare industry, where jobs such as certified nursing assistants are projected to grow to 41 percent by 2026.
The NextStep programme utilises courses delivered on mobile devices in 10-15 minute modules to help working adults complete the training and licensure requirements needed to unlock careers as certified nursing assistants.
The mobile modules are supplemented by in-person practice sessions as the new NextStep training lab in Denver and by clinical experiences with employer partners.
Workers not only receive training, but also benefit from an industry-recognised certification and automatic job placement services at Colorado long-term care and senior living facilities.
Laura Landwirth, President and CEO of Leading Age Colorado, the largest association of senior living and care providers in Colorado, said: “At a time when certified nursing assistant vacancies are going unfilled across the state, this initiative is pioneering a transformative new approach to supporting and upskilling Colorado’s healthcare workforce.
“NextStep aims to help to build a pipeline of highly-qualified workers for senior living and home healthcare providers in our state, closing skills gaps and improving quality and access to care.”
Enrolment is currently open for the first cohort of students to participate in the certificate programme, which will be offered tuition-free for those who complete by 15 December.
Pic: Luis Melendez
Kate Frazer is a reporter for Global Education Times with a focus on UK/Ireland and North American education news. When she is not writing for GET News, Kate spends her time as an English and Maths tutor, and is currently pursuing her PGCE in Secondary Mathematics.
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