Community Health Workers: Trained community professionals contributing to more responsive, accessible health systems.
IPHI is one of the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia region’s leading partners in developing, coordinating, and evaluating Community Health Worker (CHW) initiatives.
When effectively designed and implemented, CHW programs are essential to community-based public health and healthcare systems. IPHI is engaged in a range of activities, including:
- Conducting CHW and clinical care team training programs;
- Designing, coordinating, and evaluating CHW programs;
- Building awareness about the value of CHWs;
- Working with partners to grow and sustain the CHW workforce and services, including supporting practical CHW certification and more sustainable financing; and
- Developing the Center for the Community Health Workforce and CHW professional networks.
IPHI has adopted the American Public Health Association (APHA) definition of a CHW. As trusted community members, CHWs serve as liaisons between health/social services and the community to improve service access, quality of service, and cultural competence. CHWs also build individual and community capacity through various activities such as outreach, community education, informal counseling, social support, and advocacy.
IPHI provides CHWs and clinical and community-based teams with comprehensive training and support. The team offers community-level training across service providers and overarching coordination, support, and evaluation to help change the care systems.
Work examples are included below:
- The Center for the Community Health Workforce
- CHWs and COVID-19 Pandemic Response
- Community Health Worker Training Program
- CHW Certification and Related Policy Initiatives
- RVA Breathes: A Richmond Research Study on Community-Based Pediatric Asthma Interventions
- Care Transitions Project
- CHWs and HIV/AIDS Prevention and Care