New Resource: Medicaid Financing for Community Health Workers
In a new white paper, PIH-US provides recommendations for state policy makers for creating long-term funding for community health workers.
Posted on Jun 28, 2023
This month, Partners In Health United States (PIH-US) released a policy paper providing recommendations to state policy makers on how to establish more sustainable funding for community health workers.
Community health workers form the backbone of PIH’s work across the globe, and are central to our vision for equity-centered public health systems in the U.S. While this crucial workforce has too often been underfunded and under supported, many states have begun to integrate community health workers into their Medicaid programs. As a public health insurance program administered by states, Medicaid covers many Americans, including low-income individuals and vulnerable populations. While community health worker services can be beneficial to everyone, community health workers are particularly effective in supporting populations more likely to be covered by Medicaid. State policymakers are increasingly recognizing the crucial role community health workers play in promoting health equity and have started integrating this workforce into Medicaid programs by utilizing existing policies to fund their services.
Our new policy paper examines best practices from states and recommends five key principles that every state can follow to fund community health workers through Medicaid and promote health equity. This tool provides key reference information for PIH-US and our partners and can be used for advocacy. The recommendations in this paper were informed by our work with community health workers around the world and in the U.S., as well as by national partners and experts. We aim for this tool to actively contribute to supporting sustained investments in community health workers by recognizing their value, preserving what makes them unique and effective, and promoting community health worker leadership in policy-making processes.
By following these recommendations, state policy makers can more effectively support community health workers and leverage their expertise to promote health equity and improve health outcomes in their communities.