Massachusetts established one of the first CHW programs in the country under the Economic Opportunities Act of 1964. Since that time, the CHW workforce has continued to grow. Strong CHW leadership in Massachusetts, with support from MDPH, organized the Massachusetts Association of Community Health Workers (MACHW) in 2000. MACHW leaders are policy advocates on the state and national level, have built key collaborations in Massachusetts and have participated in state and national studies on the CHW workforce. MACHW continues to be a voice for both the CHW workforce and the expansion of access to health care for the state's underserved communities.
In 2009 MACHW collaborated with key partners to craft the bill An Act to Establish a Board of Certification of Community Health Workers, House, No. 4130, under consideration by the Legislature.
CHW Organizations in Massachusetts
There are many organizations in MA that support CHWs. Below you will find links to CHW advocacy organizations, training programs, and workforce development initiatives.
Statewide CHW Associations
- Massachusetts Association of Community Health Workers (MACHW)
- MACHW Affiliates:
- Community Outreach Workers Network and Training (COWNT) Coalition, Springfield, Brenda Evans, 413-787-6756, firstname.lastname@example.org
CHW Advocacy Organizations
CHW Training Programs
- Community Health Education Center (CHEC)
- Lowell Community Health Center (CHEC)
- Outreach Worker Training Institute (OWTI)
Other CHW Support Organizations
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation
- Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers
- Prevention and Access to Care and Treatment (PACT) Project
National CHW Resources
There are many CHW resources available nationwide. A number of states have implemented legislation and written reports regarding the financing, training, and sustainability of the CHW workforce. Nationally, many organizations have published studies on CHWs that highlight the current status of the workforce and impacts CHWs have on the health care system. There are also many national organizations that advocate for CHW policy issues, including the CHW Special Primary Interest Group of the American Public Health Association and the newly formed American Association of Community Health Workers.
- Community Health Worker National Workforce Study for HRSA/Bureau of Health Professions (May 2007) (PDF)
- National Community Health Advisor Study (Univ. of Arizona, 1998 — PDF)
- 2008 briefing papers on CHWs from the National Conference of State Legislatures: http://www.4shared.com/file/100620482/4ed947d6/NCSL_CHWlegisbrief_2-08.html
- "Advancing Community Health Worker Practice and Utilization: The Focus on Financing" National Fund for Medical Education, 2006
- Funding CHW Programs and Services in Minnesota: Looking to the Future
- Community Health Worker National Workforce Study: An Annotated Bibliography (PDF)
- Findings of CHW research agenda conference published October 2007
National CHW Organizations
- American Association of Community Health Workers (website under construction)
Durrell Fox, email@example.com and Pam Chapman, firstname.lastname@example.org, Co-chairs.
- CHW National Education Collaborative
- American Public Health Association CHW Special Primary Interest Group (SPIG)
- Indian Health Service CHR (Community Health Representative) Program
- Center for Sustainable Health Outreach
- New Mexico
- Alaska Community Health Aide Program
This information is provided by the Office of Community Health Workers within the Department of Public Health.