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Making the Connection: The Role of Community Health Workers in Health Homes

Making the Connection: The Role of Community Health Workers in Health Homes
  • By: Health Management Associates, Inc.
  • Date: September 2012
  • Priority Area: Improving Diabetes Prevention
  • Type: Resources
  • Category: Report
  • Document: Download

Overview

This Health Management Associates policy brief, funded by NYSHealth and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, describes the roles and value that community health workers (CHWs) can have in health homes. CHWs are trusted members of the communities they serve and are able to connect difficult-to-reach patients with the health and social services they need. The brief examines the core services that must be undertaken in health homes, and makes the connection with CHW roles and tasks.

The Affordable Care Act offers opportunities to establish and expand health homes, a model of care that is responsible for coordinating services across all care settings—including medical care, behavioral health care, and social services—for Medicaid beneficiaries. By providing these services, health homes aim to improve patient care and health outcomes for people with multiple chronic conditions, while also lowering costs. Many of the core services offered by health homes and performed by health home care management teams are also commonly performed by CHWs, who are key members of the health care workforce.