LTC background check program nabs wanted criminals, state says

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A statewide background check program for potential long-term care employees was successful in its first month of operation, according to West Virginia officials.

The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources implemented the program, called WV Clearance for Access: Registry & Employment Screening (WV CARES), in August. So far nine people have been flagged as ineligible for employment in LTC facilities, with three of those wanted for crimes in other states.

The WV CARES screening requirements include fingerprint-based state and national criminal history checks for applicants of jobs that have direct access to residents. All LTC providers in the state will be required to use the program by the beginning of 2016.

West Virginia was among 26 states that received funding from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for the National Background Check Program, which assists state health departments in strengthening background checks for long-term care employees.