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Lowering expectation for nursing home administrators a bad idea

Published: March 17, 2013

“Bill would cut degree requirement for nursing home administrators” (Tulsa World, March 10) reported a bill that's being submitted to cut degree requirements for nursing home administrators. This bill appears to be one that could easily be interpreted as “pre-selection.” Teachers, in charge of our youth, are required to have a four-year degree to teach in our public schools. A bachelor's degree is necessary to become an associate librarian. Degrees are a prerequisite for the people who care for our pets; a veterinary technologist must have a four-year bachelor's degree. Yet now, someone has presented a bill to reduce the educational requirement for those who would be in charge of the day-to-day care of our elderly!

By definition, nursing home administration is a specialized area of medical and health services management. So how is it a specialized field could be a candidate for lowering education requirements? I recognize that a college degree doesn't reflect a person's work ethic or ability and obtaining one can be timely and costly. However for some people who choose to go into specialized fields, they should prepare themselves to be competitive in their career choice.

I agree with Gaylord Z. Thomas, executive director of the Oklahoma State Board of Examiners for Long-Term Care Administrators: The board should be considering a specific degree versus deleting the requirement in its entirety. Our elderly took care of us and it's our job to care for them. We can't do that by lowering the expectations of those in charge of their care.

Candace Wietelman, Harrah


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