Can We Upgrade Low-Skill, Low-Wage Occupations? The Case of Apprenticeships in the Long-Term Care Occupations

Journal Article

Can We Upgrade Low-Skill, Low-Wage Occupations? The Case of Apprenticeships in the Long-Term Care Occupations

Abstract

The best prospect for improving job quality and compensation in low-wage jobs is by increasing worker productivity. This study investigates the prospects of registered apprenticeship training for raising productivity in the long-term care (LTC) industry, a high-demand, low-wage field that principally employs female caretakers. Case studies of five LTC registered apprenticeship programs and analysis of administrative data suggest that apprenticeship training improved productivity, client satisfaction, pay, and career advancement opportunities. It is less clear whether cost savings were sufficient to offset low Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates or remain sustainable without federal, state, or private support.

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