Community Health Workers: Part Of The Solution

Seq ID: 655
DocID: Natl139
Authors: Rosenthal EL, Wiggins N, Ingram M, Mayfield-Johnson S, Guernsey De Zapien J
Year: 2010
State: NatDoc
Website link:
Publicly Available: Yes
Policy: General, MCO contract language and reimbursement models
Sustainable Financing: General, Expand evidence base
Workforce Development: General

ABSTRACT: Community health workers are recognized in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act as important members of the health care workforce. The evidence shows that they can help improve health care access and outcomes; strengthen health care teams; and enhance quality of life for people in poor, underserved, and diverse communities. We trace how two states, Massachusetts and Minnesota, initiated comprehensive policies to foster far more utilization of community health workers and, in the case of Minnesota, to make their services reimbursable under Medicaid. We recommend that other states follow the lead of these states, further developing the workforce of community health workers, devising appropriate regulations and credentialing, and allowing the services of these workers to be reimbursed.

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