Hello everyone!  I’ve been tinkering with TMS for a couple years now, but have never used it actively with an agency yet.  One of the things I’ve been trying to accomplish within TMS is tracking of Individual-Specific training (IST).  While I know this is incredibly important everywhere, in NM we also have some pretty strict guidelines on documenting IST.  At any given moment we need to be able to produce documentation showing who is trained to work with any particular individual, and which individuals any staff is fully trained to work with – so we need to be able to see both sides of this training “coin”.  And to make matters even more challenging, some parts of IST are required annually (i.e. ISP outcomes), some are only required if/when they are updated (i.e. healthcare plans), and others are a one-time thing (i.e. individual routines and preferences).  IST isn’t really a “class” so it is a bit more complicated to build this into TMS.

IST tracking is also really difficult to do on paper.  Most agencies keep multiple copies of rosters/training sheets/shadowing forms/etc…, in multiples places, to consult to be able to answer those questions and provide required documentation.  Some agencies have “graduated” to tracking this in complex excel spreadsheets….but again, it is difficult to track all of this information.  There are usually gaps to accurate info.

At the recent NM conference we had a lively discussion in a TMS session on this very issue.  The folks over at Tabosa and ENMRSH in the SE part of our state are both working to devise a way to get TMS to capture all of this training and produce the information in an accessible manner.  Here are the two working ideas that these agencies are trying out.

Option one: Basic

In this option – there is a class titled with an Individual-specific title (i.e. you don’t want to use names because TMS is not caseload based, so we discussed using the Therap ID number for the individual – an example of the class title is “IST: CON-BR-1234”).  Then external to Therap/TMS the managers track completion of all of the IST requirements for the staff they supervise (as they always have).  Once a staff has completed all of the IST requirements for a particular individual, it is entered as complete in TMS.  The classes can be assigned, but are not “scheduled” as there are multiple components to each class that are externally tracked.

This makes it easy to run a report to see who has completed the class (i.e. who is fully trained to work with that individual), and which classes a particular staff has completed (i.e. who the staff person is trained to work with).

Option two: Advanced

In this option – there are multiple classes for each part of a person’s IST (i.e. CON-BR-1234: ISP, CON-BR-1234: healthcare plans, CON-BR-1234: routines and preferences, CON-BR-1234: OT/PT plans, etc…).  Then in the larger architecture, there is a course for each Individual.  While this course designation doesn’t really do anything yet – if we were able to run reports for courses (and not just for classes), this would be a really helpful breakout!!

While setting this way up is very labor intensive and makes your course list very long – it eliminates any external tracking and allows us to see which pieces of IST may not yet be completed, be able to track the various components with their different time frames (i.e. annual, as needed, 1x, etc..).  And it still allows reports to show who is fully trained to work with a specific individual, and which individuals a staff person is trained to work with.

This option is what Tabosa is trying out.  Jessica Dunn at Tabosa invested an incredible amount of time to build all of the classes and enter back training data.  She built courses based on the individual’s ID, and included the following classes (BSC, CARMP, HCP/MERP, ISP, PT/OT, and SLP).  The certification report then shows everyone trained on each of these classes, providing them with a very detailed way to track IST completion.  Great job Jessica!!!


So as you can see there are pros/cons to either way.  I’m also interested if anyone else has built IST tracking in a different manner than the two described above.  My ultimate goal is to eliminate the need for external tracking, and to be able to pull meaningful/helpful information out of TMS.  On that note here are my TMS requests to Therap (pretty please with a cherry on top!!!):

1.  Make the TMS reports have the ability to export to excel.  This exists almost everywhere else, why is it just PDFs in TMS?

2.  Provide the ability to run certification reports based on course and/or class, not just class.