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223260 Engaging the community in advocating for social change: The role of CHWs
Wednesday, November 10, 2010 : 8:30 AM - 8:50 AM
Community Health Workers (CHWs) have become a cornerstone of public health efforts to address health disparities. Social and economic conditions are at the core of health outcomes, and thus in order to create conditions that foster the achievement of optimal health across populations it is necessary to address systemic inequities in the distribution of resources and opportunities. Public engagement and community participation is recognized as crucial to the process of identifying, prioritizing and solving social problems that impact health. However, historically many communities have been shut out of the decision making process. CHWs are recognized as providing a vehicle through which community knowledge can be created and shared with policy makers, and there is evidence that historically CHWs have played a major role in empowering the community to take action for change. However, much of the research on CHWs focuses on their impact on individual health outcomes and ignores this broader and more fundamental issue. The Canyon Ranch Center for Prevention and Health Promotion conducted a national survey of CHW community health advocacy that sought to assess the current level of CHW community advocacy. Additionally, the survey explored CHW roles and responsibilities, training opportunities, and job environments that might be associated with advocacy activities. The survey, which builds upon a state-wide survey conducted in collaboration with the Arizona Community Health Workers Network, was disseminated through CHW National and State networks. The preliminary results of the survey will be presented.
Learning Areas:Advocacy for health and health education
Public health or related public policy
Keywords: Advocacy, Community Health Advisor
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I am a Co-Chair of the Arizona Community Health Worker Network and have been integrally involved in the research being presented
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.
Back to: 5036.0: Community Organizing and Mobilizing for Social Change