Massachusetts Resident Care Assistant Training Course

The Resident Care Assistant (RCA) role continues to be a critical entry-level position to recruit and retain the direct care workforce essential to meet the care needs of residents living in Massachusetts nursing facilities. RCA is a non-certified position created to support existing nursing staff, assist with resident care and create an accessible pipeline to future employment as Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs.) Since 2020, more than 1,000 RCAs have been trained and hired in nursing facilities across the Commonwealth. Critical to ensuring a stable and qualified workforce, members are encouraged to provide training opportunities and develop pathways for RCAs to achieve certification to become CNAs.

To establish the RCA role in member facilities, Mass Senior Care Association (MSCA) has worked with American Health Care Association, to update the 8-hour Temporary Nurse Aide training for RCAs. The Massachusetts Resident Care Assistant (RCA) 8-hour training course is now available free for MSCA members. This online training program provides initial instruction to new RCA recruits. After successfully completing the online training, RCAs receive additional onsite resident care training at the facility and undergo skills/competency assessment by the facility prior to beginning work.

Mass Senior Care has member resources on how to implement the RCA role within a facility and a guide to develop CNA training in-facility or through partnerships with local training providers.

Nursing facilities can continue to hire RCAs and use the Massachusetts Resident Care Assistant (RCA) 8-hour training course after the end of the 1135 waiver on training and certification of nurse aides, as long as RCAs hired after June 6, 2022 comply with both state and federal regulations and complete CNA training and certification within four months of employment.