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Community Health Worker

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What is a Community Health Worker?

Position Description Assist individuals and communities to adopt healthy behaviors. Conduct outreach for medical personnel or health organizations to implement programs in the community that promote, maintain, and improve individual and community health. May provide information on available resources, provide social support and informal counseling, advocate for individuals and community health needs, and provide services such as first aid and blood pressure screening. May collect data to help identify community health needs.

Life As a Community Health Worker: What Do They Do?

  • Attend community meetings or health fairs to understand community issues or build relationships with community members.
  • Develop plans or formal contracts for individuals, families, or community groups to improve overall health.
  • Advise clients or community groups on issues related to diagnostic screenings, such as breast cancer screening, pap smears, glaucoma tests, or diabetes screenings.
  • Identify the particular health care needs of individuals in a community or target area.
  • Provide basic health services, such as first aid.
  • Advise clients or community groups on issues related to improving general health, such as diet or exercise.

Community Health Worker Skills

Community Health Workers state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Types of Community Health Worker

  • Community Health Program Representative (Community Health Program Rep)
  • Community Health Navigator
  • Community Health Agent
  • Peer Health Promoter
  • Mental Health Advocate

Community Health Worker Employment Estimates

There were about 57,500 jobs for Community Health Worker in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 17.9% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 10,300 new jobs for Community Health Worker by 2026. The BLS estimates 8,500 yearly job openings in this field.

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The states with the most job growth for Community Health Worker are Utah, Colorado, and Arizona. Watch out if you plan on working in Maine, Illinois, or Mississippi. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Community Health Worker Average Salary

Community Health Workers make between $26,070 and $65,890 a year.

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Community Health Workers who work in District of Columbia, Utah, or Maryland, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Community Health Workers in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $42,830
Alaska $46,590
Arizona $40,090
Arkansas $40,220
California $49,260
Colorado $42,000
Connecticut $47,240
Delaware $40,940
District of Columbia $61,770
Florida $39,930
Georgia $41,240
Hawaii $46,380
Idaho $35,840
Illinois $42,250
Indiana $42,000
Iowa $38,050
Kansas $41,350
Kentucky $38,210
Louisiana $39,840
Maine $37,470
Maryland $50,160
Massachusetts $44,500
Michigan $44,380
Minnesota $41,110
Mississippi $32,880
Missouri $38,310
Montana $39,830
Nebraska $38,190
Nevada $45,740
New Hampshire $49,050
New Jersey $51,560
New Mexico $40,020
New York $44,340
North Carolina $41,610
North Dakota $45,210
Ohio $38,490
Oklahoma $47,110
Oregon $42,350
Pennsylvania $41,550
Rhode Island $47,430
South Carolina $42,770
Tennessee $44,630
Texas $41,640
Utah $47,830
Vermont $33,670
Washington $42,610
West Virginia $34,080
Wisconsin $45,720
Wyoming $48,230

What Tools do Community Health Workers Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Community Health Workers may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Microsoft Access
  • Microsoft Publisher
  • SmugMug Flickr
  • Electronic health record EHR software
  • Client databases

Becoming a Community Health Worker

Individuals working as a Community Health Worker have obtained the following education levels:

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Where Community Health Workers Work

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Below are examples of industries where Community Health Workers work:

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References:

Image Credit: Article 25 Flickr via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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