CHW Voluntary Certification Rules Approved in Arizona

Oct. 18, 2023
chws working

In 2018, House Bill 2324 established the CHW voluntary certification, and on September 7th 2022, Gov. Doug Ducey’s Regulatory Review Council (GRRC) unanimoulsy approved the rules for the voluntary certification process. On November 7, 2022, CHWs in Arizona will be able to apply to Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) for voluntary certification.

The GRRC reviewed the rules during a study session in August, with only a few questions for ADHS from the council members before being added to the consent agenda for September’s meeting. The final rules have since been filed with the Secretary of State and posted on the ADHS Administrative Rules webpage. Following a standard 60-day delayed effective date, the rules will go into effect on November 7, 2022, allowing time for the numerous organizations involved to plan the necessary protocols and prepare for implementation.

The Arizona Community Health Worker Association (AzCHOW) launched the voluntary certification effort in 2017 in collaboration with ADHS and the Arizona Prevention Research Center. They convened the Arizona CHW Workforce Coalition, which brought CHW stakeholders together to recognize, standardize and unify the CHW workforce by establishing core competencies. The AzPRC, AzCHOW and ADHS also developed a process to approve CHW core competency training that met the requirements of ADHS CHW Voluntary Certification Training. The AzPRC continues ot provide technical assistance in helping organizations align their CHW training with the core competencies and apply for CHW voluntary certification training approval under AzCHOW and ADHS.

On November 7th, CHWs can apply for voluntary certification if they meet the following criteria:
● 18 years of age or older
● High school diploma or equivalent diploma
● Documentation of training and/or paid or volunteer experience 
● Completion of initial CHW certification application
● Submission of nonrefundable fees (waivers available)

Importantly, no examination/testing requirement to obtain certification.

More information is available about eligibility here: PDF. The attached presentation was shared at the biannual CHW workforce coalition meeting hosted by the Arizona Prevention Research Center, AzCHOW and ADHS. Also developed by the three organizations is a frequently-asked-question page (FAQ). Visit the following LINK, here you will find numerous frequently-asked-questions, screenshots of the process, numerous other links and designated contacts for following questions.

It is with great excitement that the AzPRC announces this accomplishment of promotoras de salud, tribal community health representatives and other CHWs in Arizona.  The AzPRC is proud to have worked with Arizona CHWs to promote our mission "Championing Community Health Worker Effectiveness in Arizona and Beyond." CHW voluntary certification is an example of the collaborative achievement by our center and its numerous partners.