State Certification Programs
Some states require community health workers (CHWs) to meet training or certification standards. Credentialing
and certification programs are often implemented by a department of health or department of public health. Other
state programs are implemented by a department of human services, board of nursing, or third-party entity.
Often, credentialing is necessary to participate in reimbursement for services provided by CHWs. Recent research found that some CHWs view
certification and continuing education as a tool to help advance their careers and the CHW field as a whole,
while others believe that certification is not necessary for their role or could disconnect them from the
The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) released an updated map of the status
of state CHW certification standards. The map describes the status of state-level CHW certification
programs as of February 2020 as follows:
State operated certification program: Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Maryland, Ohio,
Indiana, Kentucky, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon
Privately operated certification program: Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Virginia, South
Carolina, Florida, Michigan, Missouri,
Certification program under development: Minnesota, Illinois
Certification program under consideration: New Hampshire, District of Columbia, West
Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Iowa, Arkansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Montana,
Colorado, Utah, Alaska
Texas was the first state to develop legislation to govern CHW activities in 1999. The Texas Department of State
Health Services offers a promotor(a) or CHW certification
A chart of state CHW models from the
National Academy for State Health Policy highlights CHW education and certification information by state.
Resources to Learn More
Community Health Worker Programs
Lists approved CHW training programs in Ohio and their contact information.
Organization(s): Ohio Board of Nursing
Health Worker Certificate (CHWC)
Lists the curriculum (courses and descriptions) required for the Ohio Board of Nursing Community Health Workers
Organization(s): Cincinnati State Technical and Community College
Health Worker Training
Provides free eight week online and in-person training for CHWs and is offered quarterly in a various locations
around Washington State.
Organization(s): Washington State Department of Health
MA Association of Community Health Workers
Provides information about the Massachusetts statewide network advocating the integration of CHWs into all
aspects of health, behavioral health, and substance recovery services.
State Community Health Worker Models
Highlights state-specific activities to integrate CHWs into healthcare systems. Covers financing, education and
training, certification, current legislation, organizations, workgroups, and their roles and scope of
Organization(s): National Academy for State Health Policy
State Law Fact Sheet: A Summary of
State Community Health Worker Laws
Identifies state laws authorizing a CHW core certification process and certification to practice. Describes laws
related to curriculum development, scope of practice, reimbursement, and CHW participation in managed or
team-based care models.
Organization(s): Centers for Disease Control and Prevention