FQHC Training: Maintaining Compliance and Improving Care

Sarah Jones

The challenges facing federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) are daunting. High staff turnover, sparse resources, and diverse populations with complex medical issues are just a few of the hurdles FQHCs, community health centers, and look-alikes must overcome. Mounting FQHC training requirements only adds to that load.

FQHC training isn’t one-size-fits-all. With many different staff types, there are significant differences in training requirements for each role. Understanding the differences in these requirements can ensure staff are taking the most relevant courses to maintain regulatory and accreditation compliance.

In this article, we’ll explore the requirements for FQHC training and ways to simplify training delivery.

Importance of FQHC Training

Like all healthcare professionals providing safe, legal, and ethical services, FQHC staff must complete required compliance training. Topics include laws and regulations related to patient privacy, how to prevent the spread of infectious diseases, correctly manage medications, and ensure the physical safety of both the patient and the aide.

Education is required in many regulatory requirements and is one of the Office of the Inspector General’s (OIG) seven components of compliance in healthcare. But beyond that, it enables staff to provide the highest quality of care and patient safety. Well-trained staff are more competent, improving patient care and satisfaction. It also helps to reduce the risk of accidents, errors, and violations that can lead to lawsuits or harm the center’s reputation. Regular compliance training is an opportunity for FQHCs to update their staff on the latest best practices, technologies, and regulatory changes. This ongoing learning culture promotes continuous improvement in care quality and operational efficiency.

FQHC Compliance Training Requirements

There isn’t a universal list of training requirements for all FQHC employees. Training requirements vary by employee role and specific healthcare setting.

Below are courses common to many roles in FQHCs that meet federal requirements. Staff should review the requirements for their specific state to remain in compliance.

Required Clinical Staff Training

  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Fire Safety and Fire Extinguisher Types
  • Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Disaster Preparedness
  • Hazardous Communication and Chemical Safety (OSHA)
  • Personal Protective Equipment (OSHA)
  • Pharma Waste, Identification, Segregation, and Disposal (USP)
  • Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Treatment and Management of Patients with Opioid or Other Substance Abuse Disorders
  • Federal Torts Claim Act (FTCA) Obstetrics Risk Assessment
  • Infection Control and Prevention in a Non-Hospital Setting
  • Hand Hygiene (OSHA)
  • Bloodborne Pathogens (OSHA)
  • Preventing Needlesticks (OSHA)
  • N95 Filtering Facepiece Respirator (OSHA)

Note: Several of these courses are also required for Facilities and Management

Required Non-Clinical Staff Training

  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
  • Fire Safety and Fire Extinguisher Types
  • Personal Protective Equipment
  • Infection Control and Prevention in a Non-Hospital Setting
  • Disaster Preparedness
  • Hand Hygiene

Highly Recommended Staff Training

  • General Safety Orientation (OSHA)
  • Active Shooter Training (OSHA)
  • Unlawful Harassment for Employees (and Managers)
  • Transmission-Based Precautions (OSHA)

Recommended Staff Training

  • Cybersecurity and HIPAA
  • Ergonomics & Injury Prevention (OSHA)
  • Preventing Slips, Trips, Falls, and Work Clutter (OSHA)

Please note: This is not a comprehensive list and should not be considered legal or medical advice.

Download the Ultimate List of Training Requirements for FQHCs (CHCs) to see a full list of federal training requirements broken down by role, with the applicable standard and frequency.

Simplify Delivery of FQHC Training

Compliance training is foundational in maintaining high standards of care, safety, and legal compliance in FQHCs. However, meeting FQHC requirements is not as easy as it sounds!

In-person training and paper sign-in sheets are time-consuming and error-prone. Cobbling online courses from many sources gets the job done, but it’s difficult for surveyors to track. A learning management system not built for healthcare may not have the specific courses required for your facility. 

What you need is an online learning management system built for healthcare. Here’s what to look for:

  • Healthcare-specific courses that are consistently updated
  • Vendor knowledge about healthcare regulations and policy-making
  • Courses that are designed to meet multiple standards to reduce the load
  • Customizable reporting that can be set up for your regulatory or accreditation requirements
  • Automated course completion reminders
  • Ability to create or upload facility-specific courses


Simplify compliance training with MedTrainer Learning

MedTrainer offers an all-in-one compliance solution that combines learning, compliance documentation, and credentialing. Experts will help your organization ensure that FQHC training is complete and compliant. Learn more about MedTrainer.