Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion

Cancer

Patient Navigators and Community Health Workers

Patient navigators (PNs) and community health workers (CHWs) play important roles in improving cancer outcomes. PNs and CHWs educate people about cancer prevention and screening, connect patients to healthcare providers, provide linkages to financial and community resources, and navigate patients through the healthcare system. ASTHO has produced several resources to highlight how state health leadership can support these vocations in the healthcare workforce.

Issue Brief: Cancer Prevention and Control: How State Health Agencies Can Support Patient Navigators and Community Health Workers

This issue brief, produced by ASTHO’s Chronic Disease Project, highlights the growing importance of patient navigators and community health workers in the healthcare workforce and showcases successful developments to establish the role of these vocations in various states, territories and regions. It delineates several important ways state health leadership can collaborate and partner to support these workers as a part of the evolving healthcare delivery system by advocating for workforce development, long-term financing mechanisms, establishment of occupational associations, and policies that enable providers to be reimbursed for the valuable services they offer. For more information, contact Julia Schneider.

Archived Webinar: Improving Cancer Prevention and Control: How State Health Agencies Can Support Patient Navigators and Community Health Workers

Click here to access the recording.

Patient navigators (PNs) and community health workers (CHWs) play an important role in improving the quality of care for our nation, working with patients to improve the prevention, screening, and treatment of cancer. State and territorial health officials and their agencies serve a vital role in further expanding and supporting the role of patient navigators and community health workers. This webinar highlights key recommendations and state examples from ASTHO’s new issue brief.

Objectives:

  • Understand the role of patient navigators and community health workers in national efforts to support health reform, the National Prevention Strategy, and Comprehensive Cancer Control Programs.
  • Encourage state and territorial health leadership to support the development of PNs and CHWs in the healthcare system by establishing core workforce competencies, long-term reimbursement protocols, and occupational associations.
  • Showcase how several states have developed partnerships, coalitions, training and certification models, and policies to increase the recognition and effectiveness of PNs and CHWs.

Presentations provided by:

Julia Schneider, Chronic Disease Prevention, ASTHO; Nikki Hayes, Acting Branch Chief and Katherine Roland, Behavioral Scientist, Comprehensive Cancer Control Branch, Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, CDC; Sharon Dwyer, Virginia Tech University, Appalachia Community Cancer Network; Susan Fleming, Cancer Program, Florida Department of Health; and Elizabeth Whitley, Community Voices, Denver Health.