CHW Certification

Recording of the State’s CHW online application process in June 2024

CHW Certification in Massachusetts

Below you will find resources for applying for voluntary CHW certification and answers to frequently asked questions. Information about certification is regularly updated on the Board of CHW Certification website.

Contact the Board of Certification by email or contact the Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s Office of CHWs for more information.

Apply for Certification

Learn what you need to apply for certification and download the application documents.

View this webinar for a step-by-step explanation of how to fill out the application: (you may need to download Adobe Connect).

FAQs about Applying

View answers to FAQs about certification and the application process.

Core Competencies for Certification

The ten core competencies for CHWs were developed over two decades of consensus building in Massachusetts among key stakeholders. Massachusetts’ core competencies are in alignment with national consensus on CHW core competencies. Read more about the core competencies for CHW certification.

Training Programs

Massachusetts offers a range of training programs in the core competencies for CHWs. Review the state’s website for a list of available training programs.

Get Involved

Get involved in shaping CHW certification in Massachusetts! The Board of Certification meetings are open to the public and CHWs are welcome.  Meetings are typically monthly. View the Board of Certification meeting calendar for details and any cancellations.

Background on Certification

The 2006 Massachusetts health reform law (Chapter 58), Section 110, requested that Department of Public Health convene a statewide CHW advisory council to investigate the CHW workforce and report out recommendations. There was cross-sector support for their recommendation to create a certification process for CHWs. MACHW held statewide forums to hear from CHWs about certification, and in partnership with experts at the DPH, wrote the legislation to establish the Board of Certification of Community Health Workers.

Chapter 322, Acts of 2010, An Act Establishing a Board of Certification of Community Health Workers,” was signed into law to take effect in 2012. The law calls for voluntary certification, rather than mandatory licensure. The goal is to create a competency-based process that recognizes and strengthens the work of CHWs and avoids barriers for effective CHWs to get certified. The Board also has the authority to approve core CHW training programs.