National Academy of Medicine

Bringing Community Health Workers into the Mainstream of U.S. Health Care

By Mary Pittman, Anne Sunderland, Andrew Broderick, Kevin Barnett
February 04, 2015 | Discussion Paper

We have an innovation that is showing tremendous gains in improving health, especially among vulnerable populations. The innovation is the use of community health workers (CHWs), and, more specifically, their integration into team-based primary care. Scaling up the use of CHWs presents a unique set of obstacles, but it is also possible to chart a roadmap forward. The potential to improve care for vulnerable populations, help achieve the Triple Aim of better care, better health and lower costs, and advance population health is too promising to be deterred.



Suggested Citation

Pittman, M., A. Sunderland, A. Broderick, and K. Barnett. 2015. Bringing Community Health Workers into the Mainstream of U.S. Health Care. NAM Perspectives. Discussion Paper, National Academy of Medicine, Washington, DC. doi: 10.31478/201502c


Disclaimer: The views expressed in this paper are those of the authors and not necessarily of the authors’ organizations, the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), or the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (the National Academies). The paper is intended to help inform and stimulate discussion. It is not a report of the NAM or the National Academies. Copyright by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.