What an interesting idea [*see note below]. I think there is a great deal of potential. One avenue may be to look at universities and colleges that have community health tracks. A colleague this week will be talking with someone from CUNY (City University of New York) regarding health workforce considerations within community health coursework. I’ll try to get a sense of where their conversation goes.
Community health workers perform such a variety of roles in such a variety of contexts, and we sometimes only look in low- and middle-income country contexts. Your comment/inquiry shows both the importance of CHWs in reaching specific populations (in this case Native Americans) and of creating potential avenues for people to continue developing their skills.
I’d love to hear other responses to this inquiry.
Community Health Worker Guideline Communications & Advocacy
Human Resources for Health Policies & Standards
Health Workforce Department
World Health Organization
Avenue Appia 20, CH-1211 Geneva 27
+41 22 791 1593
HIFA profile: Catherine Kane is a member of the WHO Health Workforce team, responsible for advocacy and dissemination of the Guideline on health policy and system support to optimize community health worker programmes. She has experience with community health worker programmes at strategic and operational levels through WHO, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and at one point as a social worker supporting migrant communities. She is a member of the HIFA working group on CHWs. http://www.hifa.org/support/members/catherine Twitter: readycat
[*Note from HIFA moderator (Neil PW): Rosemary Bolza, USA: 'My dream is to develop a pre nursing course for the community college level that would include the learning from these trainings so the training becomes the beginning of a career. Knowing about family planning, breastfeeding, and domestic violence would be valuable for all nurses and other health professionals as well as provide this training to those wanting to do these jobs themselves. I would like to join with others who would be interested in developing such a course.' http://www.hifa.org/dgroups-rss/chws-59-chw-career-progression-3 ]