The Business Case for Community Health Workers Presentation

The Business Case for Community Health Workers Presentation

Presented By: Carl H. Rush, MRP and Joanne Calista, LICSW

Carl H. Rush, MRP

Research Affiliate, Project on Community Health Worker Policy & Practice
University of Texas – Houston, Institute for Health Policy

Carl H. Rush, MRP has worked full time for and with community health workers (CHWs) for the past 18 years. He serves as a core team member of a new policy center on CHWs at the University of Texas – Houston School of Public Health, and has supported studies on CHW employment policy for the states of Texas and Indiana, and for Public Health Seattle/King County. He is currently revising a national e-learning series for the CDC on policy and systems change, to promote employment of CHWs, and is working on a national study of the content of “benchmark” training curricula for CHWs as well as a textbook on supervision of CHWs. He is co-convener of a group of national organizations and federal agencies tracking implementation of the recent Medicaid rule change on preventive services. Carl was a lead author on the CHW National Workforce Study for the HRSA Bureau of Health Professions (2007). He was the first Director of the New Jersey CHW Institute and ran the CHW Program at Northwest Vista College in San Antonio. Carl has also trained CHWs, supervisors and instructors in seven other states, and has provided technical assistance to grantees of the CDC, HRSA and CMS. He has consulted for Migrant Health Promotion, the CHW National Education Collaborative (U.S. Department of Education), the American Dental Association, the National Council for Behavioral Health, and various AHEC programs. He has advised CHW policy initiatives in more than 15 individual states, and groups of state officials for the Milbank Memorial Fund, the National Conference of State Legislatures and the National Governors Association. He is an advisor to the Transition Clinics Network and the CHW Knowledge Exchange Project at Johns Hopkins University. He has served in leadership positions with the CHW Section of APHA since 2004, and on the APHA Governing Council, Education Board and Joint Policy Committee.

Joanne Calista, LICSW

Executive Director
Central Massachusetts AHEC, Outreach Worker Training Institute

Ms. Calista’s career has focused on designing and implementing clinical, organizational, and policy focused strategies to address health equity. She has worked in and directed diverse interdisciplinary health care teams providing care to a range of populations, including persons with HIV/AIDS, homeless individuals, and persons with chronic conditions. She has worked as a CHW and as a CHW supervisor in acute care, outpatient, and behavioral health settings, with a focus on the role of the supervisor as an organizational and policy change agent. Her related policy work includes the design of a nationally funded CHW reintegration project for the state of Massachusetts as well as serving as the vice chair of the MA Board of Certification of CHWs—which is establishing educational, training, and certification standards for the workforce. Ms. Calista obtained her bachelor’s degree in psychology and relations from Harvard College and her master’s degree in social work from Columbia University. She holds an appointment at the University of Massachusetts Medical School where her teaches a community based Population Health Clerkship for medical and graduate nursing students in end of life care.