Community Health Workers comprise a workforce that is uniquely positioned to improve health, address the social determinants of health, reduce health care costs, and improve the cultural responsiveness of the health system. Voluntary Certification is a way for Community Health Workers to gain professional recognition and respect for their knowledge and skills.
In 2017-2018, AzCHOW piloted a voluntary certification process as the professional organization representing CHWs in the state. Voluntary certification through AzCHOW sought to standardize and unify the CHW workforce. AzCHOW piloted this process and certified it’s first class of 5 Community Health Workers in November 2017.
During the 2018 legislative session, the Arizona State Legislature passed HB 2324 Voluntary Certification for Community Health Workers, which established a voluntary certification process for CHWs through the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS). HB 2324 was signed by Governor Doug Ducey on May 18, 2018. AzCHOW will continue to be involved in the process as ADHS establishes a voluntary certification process.
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