Video Spotlight

"'I'm a Health Worker' - Abduaraman Gidi" made by IntraHealth International.

Community Health Workers: Roles and Opportunities in Health Care Delivery System Reform

Community Health Workers (CHWs) are an emerging group of health professionals that have recently drawn increased national attention because of their potential to deliver cost-effective, high quality, and culturally competent health services within team-based care models. The apparent benefits of integrating CHWs into health care teams seem to depend on context.

Promotores de Salud: A Presentation by the CDC

This presentation, from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, illustrates the role and purpose of Promotores de Salud (loose translation of CHWs in Spanish) in the US health care system. It introduces the background and key advantages of Promotores in their local communities. Furthermore, it outlines examples of prevention campaigns and projects where CHWs and Promotores can participate to improve outreach of service delivery in minority and elderly populations.


Community health workers in the wake of health care reform

As the United States transforms its health system, many policymakers are turning to community health workers to tackle some of the most challenging aspects of health improvement, such as facilitating care coordination, enhancing access to community-based services, mitigating the impacts of the social determinants of health, addressing health disparities, and containing costs.

Community health workers recruitment from within: an inner-city neighborhood-driven framework

Community health workers (CHWs) are frontline public health workers who are trusted members of and/or have an unusually close understanding of the community served. Among other roles, they are effective in closing critical communication gap between healthcare providers and patients as they possess key abilities to overcome cultural barriers, minimize disparities, and maximize adherence to clinical directions. In previous descriptions of the selection of CHWs, the role of community is clearly emphasized, but residence in the community is not indicated. 

Interprofessional Teamwork and Collaboration Between Community Health Workers and Healthcare Teams: An Integrative Review

Community health workers (CHWs) can improve outcomes for underserved people. Evidence exists that CHW interventions in underserved populations improve health care management, disease prevention, and health promotion. Community health workers improve management of chronic illnesses such as asthma, diabetes, maternal–child health issues, increase health promotion activities such as vaccinations and cancer screening, and demonstrate net cost savings. Based on this evidence, interest in new CHW models has grown.

CHWs and Social Determinants of Health: How Far Upstream Are We looking?

Shared during the 2015 American Public Health Association (APHA) Annual meeting, Geoff Wilkinson and Durrell Fox presentation focused on community health workers and the social determinants of health.

How CHW Leadership Strengthens Certification: A View from Two States

Shared during the 2015 American Public Health Association (APHA), this document summarizes CHW certification initiatives, describes certification in Florida and Massachusetts, and shares lessons about certification that may be useful in other states. 

Community Health Workers Promoting Physical Activity: Targeting Multiple Levels of the Social Ecological Model

The effectiveness of community health workers (CHWs) as health educators and health promoters among Latino populations is widely recognized. The Affordable Care Act created important opportunities to increase the role of CHWs in preventive health. This article describes the implementation of CHW-led, culturally specific, faith-based program to increase physical activity among churchgoing Latinas.

Community health worker interventions to improve access to health care services for older adults from ethnic minorities: a systematic review

The health status of most ethnic minority groups in Western countries is poorer than the health status of the majority population. This is especially applicable for ethnic minority older adults. Limited access to health care services has been reported to be an important factor for these disparities in health and is in part caused by limited knowledge about health care facilities, language problems, and financial barriers. Intercultural differences in the perception of health needs and reasons for consultation may be other important contributing factors.


CHW Central is managed by Initiatives Inc. Site start-up was supported by the USAID Health Care Improvement Project in 2011.

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