AUSTIN (Nexstar) — Texas lawmakers are considering legislation to require more training for assisted-living facility employees who care for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients.

State Rep. Giovanni Capriglione (R-Southlake) presented House Bill 1673 to the Texas House Committee on Human Services Monday. The bill would require every staff member who interacts with residents in an assisted living facility to receive four hours of training about Alzheimer’s and related disorders like dementia. Staff would be required to pass an exam proving they understand the delicate care the disease requires and are capable of caring for these residents.

Those who have watched dementia impact their family say the additional requirements are crucial.

“My mom had younger-onset Alzheimer’s,” Mike McGuff said. He testified on the bill Monday, recalling his experience watching his mom be diagnosed when she was just 53 years old. “I had her in an assisted living facility, and I saw then we had issues with care. You can spend a lot of money at these places, and there’s a lot of promises… It’s a very difficult environment.”

The bill would require assisted living facilities to either include the additional four hours of training within their preexisting programs or bear the cost of the additional training themselves.

Rep. Capriglione said some nursing facilities have pushed against the bill, citing the costs they would incur. He argued those costs far outweigh the benefits.

The bill was left pending in the Human Services Committee on Monday. On Tuesday, Alzheimer’s advocates met at the Texas Capitol for their organization’s advocacy day.

This coverage is ongoing and will be updated with the latest reporting throughout the day.