Arizona families now have option to earn an income while being caregivers for their chronically ill kids

A new law in Arizona will allow caregivers of chronically ill children the chance to earn an income.

"It's going to be a really big game changer for our community," said Naomi Carlise, as she talked about the Family Licensed Health Aide Program. "Special needs parents: it’s not something you plan to have to do."

Carlise, who cares for her daughter, Olivia, is now one of the first mothers in the state who has completed the necessary programming, and is now a licensed health aide. 

"[Olivia] will turn five in June, and she has a condition called Rett Syndrome, which is a neurological disorder that affects her ability to walk and talk," said Carlise.

Fred Johnson, CEO of Team Select Home Care, talked about the new program.

"It allows parents of medically fragile children who qualify for the program to receive free education to become a licensed health aide, very much like the equivalent of a certified nursing aide," said Johnson.

A caregiver is then able to work under a home care agency, like Team Select Home Care.

"Primarily, what we do is pediatric home care," said Johnson. "We take care of medically fragile children in their homes, and do our best to keep them out of the hospital and safe at home with their families."

Team select home care has 38 locations, spanning 11 states. Carlise earned her certification with Team Select in two days, and at no cost.

"I did the training with a mom who had a child with a G-tube, and Olivia doesn’t have that, so I didn’t do that portion of the training," said Carlise. "It was really geared specifically towards what I needed to know for Olivia, which helped a lot."

The program helps alleviate a major financial burden some families face, as a caretaker is often forced to leave the workforce.

"It’s the continuity of care that matters for these children," said Johnson. "That they get their care plan executed every day, so that a stable child remains stable."

Family CNA Program by Team Select Home Care

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