NextStep, a startup that trains and places high-demand healthcare workers, today announced the launch of an online certificate designed to improve the safety of certified nursing assistants and other caregivers working with COVID-19 patients.

The first-of-its-kind program is being offered in partnership with LeadingAge and the National Domestic Workers Alliance, which represents nannies, house cleaners and care workers.

“Now more than ever, employees are integral to the care our nonprofit members provide,” said Katie Smith Sloan president and CEO of LeadingAge. “Easily accessible and reliable information in the fight against coronavirus is crucial to ensuring the safety and well-being of staff and the older adults they serve. This program is a timely and welcome resource for caregivers, whether they work in nursing homes, in a client’s personal residence or in another care setting.”

The National COVID-Ready Caregiver Certificate is delivered through a series of 12, short-form videos — most three minutes or less — that workers can access with mobile devices even while commuting or at home.

Senior care workers should expect to learn health and safety protocols related to COVID-19 and receive expert guidance on using personal protective equipment, diagnosing symptoms, caring for the elderly and individuals who are quarantined, and precautions that can protect them and their families.

“This is an effort to make sure there is one highly reliable and accessible place for the millions of caregivers to go to get the information they need to make sure they and those they care for are safe,” NextStep CEO Chris Hedrick told McKnight’s. “We want to make this offering as easy to complete as possible for these workers who are already doing so much. Because it’s delivered through online videos, developed by experts and optimized for mobile, it is much more accessible than in-person training or pointing employees or family members to a variety of sources of information that are not focused on the particular needs of long-term care workers.”

NDWA and LeadingAge will share the online course with their members across the country. LeadingAge members will be able to provide discounted access to the certification to their employees through an agreement with NextStep. Governmental agencies are also eligible for discounted access to the certification program.

“Winning the fight against COVID-19 means giving our caregivers the tools and training they need,” Hedrick said. “We’re proud to support these national organizations and the millions of workers they represent who are helping reduce community spread and protect our loved ones.”