Welcome to the Direct Service Worker Site
What’s a Direct Service Worker?
A Direct Service Worker is a generic name for many different kind of workers who all provide a very important service to people who need help. Sometimes a Direct Service Worker is called a Direct Support Professional, a Personal Support Specialist, a Home Health Aide or a Mental Health Rehabilitation Technician – Level 1. A Direct Service Worker might:
A Direct Service Worker might:
- Work with elders, people who need help with Activities of Daily Living, adults with serious and persistent mental illness or children with emotional disturbance, and people with intellectual disability or autism.
- Provide physical “hands-on” assistance.
- Work in a hospital, nursing facility, residential facility, in a client’s home, or out in the community
- Be called a DSP, PSS, MHRT-1, BHP, CNA, HHA, CD-PA, CNA-M, or CRMA.
While a Direct Service Worker can be many different things, all play a profound role in shaping the quality of care and the quality of life for those they serve. Without a top quality direct care workforce, Maine will not be able to meet the needs of its elders, people with disabilities or chronic illness, or people with mental illness. This website reflects DHHS’ commitment to support this very important workforce, which provides these critical services both though privately funded agencies and through those programs funded by DHHS.
- Helps people who are interested in becoming a Direct Service Worker to learn about the different career options for workers
- Helps providers who want to hire Direct Service Workers learn about the required qualifications and training for different types of Direct Service Workers
- Helps people who need a Direct Service Worker find out more about what to look for and how to work with a Direct Service Worker
- Provides a quick roadmap for accessing training programs for different types of workers
You can also find out about some of the work that’s being done to make it easier to build a stronger Direct Service workforce.
If you need more details or have a comment please contact us at:
Continuing Ed. Training
Who: Direct Service Workers already certified in a variety of job titles
Why: Expand your knowledge and skills, grow in your career and discover new ways to support the people you serve.
What: Topics available now - Infection Control and Prevention; Dementia Basics; Brain Injury Basics
Maine Department of Human Services is working on a new Direct Service Worker training Program (DSWTP) to build a common, competency-based core curriculum for workers in the three largest direct service titles:
Personal Support Specialists (PSS)
Mental Health Rehabilitation Technicians (MHRT 1)
Direct Service Professionals (DSP)
Currently, workers who want to work across different populations and in different settings may have to repeat very similar training in order to meet varying certification rules. This redundancy is frustrating to both employers and to workers. The DSWTP will reduce those barriers and build a more integrated, flexible training system.
DSWTP is funded as a partnership between the federal Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, and the University of Southern Maine.