Community Health Workers
Georgia Community Health Worker Initiative (CHWI)
The CHW Initiative is a collaborative effort driven by partners and stakeholders across the state of Georgia.
CHW & COVID
CHWs play a vital role on health care teams and the communities they serve. This is especially true as we continue combatting the COVID-19 pandemic. Please click Here to find resources from the National Association of Community Health Workers (NACHW) highlighting the many roles of CHWs as it relates to the COVID-19 response, how to partner with CHWs, and resources for CHWs.
Georgia Community Health Workers for Covid-19
COVID-19 has exacerbated chronic disease and its related risk factors (i.e. diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and smoking) for many Georgians. Factors such as the need to practice social distancing recommendations, remote working, the closing of businesses and job loss, increase isolation while contributing to a decrease in overall physical activity in communities across the state, as well as an increase in unhealthy eating practices and food insecurity. These factors put this population at higher risk for serious complications from COVID-19.
The focus of this grant is to work with disadvantaged populations to remove barriers, create opportunity, problem solve, and navigate to resources, in addition to promote the COVID vaccination and testing. CHWs are deployed across the state focusing on areas, such as a county or cluster of zip codes that have been severely impacted by COVID-19, to ensure the CHWs efforts have the greatest impact. CHWs are focusing on tobacco users, those with prediabetes/ diabetes, and/or pre-hypertension/hypertension, cancer and obesity to promote the COVID-19 vaccine, COVID-19 booster and COVID-19 testing. In addition, CHW are working to remove barriers, and connect this population with resources and opportunities that promote healthier food options and increase physical activity.
CHW Advisory Board
The Georgia Community Health Worker (CHW) Advisory Board began in May 2017. The purpose of the Advisory Board is to help align our efforts state-wide to define, train, and certify CHWs, and to provide recognition to this growing group of professionals. The Advisory Board provides strategic vision for Georgia’s Community Health Worker Initiative. The Advisory Board includes organizations and associations that have a state-wide focus and are geared towards addressing community health, health equity, and access to care for all. The boards recent focus has been on how to integrate CHWs into the workflow as well as how to foster a stronger and more sustainable relationship with the workforce. The Advisory Board works in collaboration with the CHW Network to develop a CHW career ladder. The Advisory Board consists of representatives from various sectors (health, public health, academia, community-based organizations, care management organizations, physicians, nursing, CHWs, and social workers).
Georgia CHW Advocacy Coalition
The Georgia CHW Advocacy Coalition was established in April 2018, with the purpose of supporting the work of the Advisory Board. The Advocacy Coalition informs and promotes the role of the CHW in the community (to increase visibility), in addition to advocating for CHWs to be recognized as certified health professionals in the state. The Advocacy Coalition also works in collaboration with the Network to create materials for employers, supervisors, legislators, and the community regarding the role of the CHW. The CHW Advocacy Coalition is currently made up of approximately 70 members and is led by Georgia Watch.
To join the CHW Advocacy Coalition, please send a letter of interest to the Advocacy Coalition email:
Please email [email protected] for more information and to join the conversation.
The CHW Advocacy Training
This will be a four-part series that will arm Georgia CHWs with resources to increase the efficacy of their organizing work and enable them to strategically mobilize marginalized communities around policy issues. The training and ongoing support will ensure that Georgia CHWs have a working knowledge of advocacy best practices, a core set of advocacy skills at different policy levels, and enable them to train their peers in civic advocacy and community organizing around health equity.
For more information about the work of the Coalition or if you are interested in joining the effort, please visit: https://georgiawatch.org/community-health-workers-and-access-to-care/.
In 2021, the Community Health Worker Initiative, in collaboration with its partners, launched the Georgia Community Health Worker Network. The CHW Network provides opportunities for CHWs to collaborate through meetings and learning collaboratives that support peer learning exchanges and collaborative partnerships. Participants discuss updates on local, regional, and national CHW events, activities, policy development and highlight local CHW projects. The CHW Network serves as a professional network for CHWs in Georgia. The CHW Network also advises the Advisory Board on professional development opportunities (trainings), and CHW career ladder development. The CHW Network also works in collaboration with the Advocacy Coalition to create materials for employers, supervisors, legislators, and the community regarding the role of the CHW.
To sign up for the CHW Network membership listserv, please click on the link below:
To receive the monthly DPH CHW Newsletter, please register by clicking the link below:
Page last updated 12/19/2022