Accelerating Best Practices in Peer Support Around the World

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June 2016 – Peer Support in Primary Care – Mental Health Integration

This month’s newsletter features the Peer Patient-Aligned Care Team Project from the Veterans Health Administration, recent resources on primary care and behavioral health integration, and studies from VA researchers.

October 2015 – Special Publications in Peer Support

Special publications like the ones highlighted in this month’s spotlight advance the field by helping practitioners develop and improve programs, and by encouraging policymakers to support solutions that work. We hope that these special publications add more weight to the momentum that will push our field to the tipping point.

August 2015 – Summer Issue

In April 2015, Peers for Progress and the UNC Center for Diabetes Translational Research hosted a meeting to discuss the integration of peer support and eHealth for chronic disease self-management. Experts in the field shared lessons learned from their programs, provided feedback on the development of an upcoming Peers for Progress pilot program, and identified critical areas for future investigation.

May 2015 – New Conference Report on Peer Support in the PCMH

The National Council of La Raza (NCLR), the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC), and Peers for Progress of the American Academy of Family Physicians Foundation organized a conference to highlight models of PCMH and primary care integration of CHWs, Promotores de Salud and other providers of peer support.

April 2015 – Strengthening the Case for Peer Support in Primary Care

One of the challenges for peer support is demonstrating its cost-benefit and building a strong business case. Our economic analysis report, included in this month’s newsletter, provides evidence for the economic value of peer support and to address methodological challenges in the field. Also included is a program guide for Alivio Medical Center’s Mi Salud es Primero, a promotores de salud program for diabetes self-management in a primary care setting.

March 2015 – Better Supervision of Peer Supporters

When starting up a peer support program, host organizations may find that managing and supervising peer supporters poses some new challenges. In this month’s spotlight, we share 6 resources on supervision of peer supporters and/or community health workers.

February 2015 – Black History Month Special Issue

In honor of Black History Month, we look at four peer support programs around the country that are making a difference in African American communities.

January 2015

Spotlights for this month feature our expanded and updated Program Development Guide and an NPR article about an organization called City Health Works.

December 2014 – Join Us in Advocating for Peer Support

This year, Peers for Progress, National Council of La Raza, along with colleagues of the National Peer Support Collaborative Learning Network, have worked hard to advocate for the adoption, scale up, and sustainability of peer support.

Our projects include developing a Call to Action, advancing quality assurance for community health workers, conducting economic analyses of peer support programs, and collecting personal stories of peer support. This issue recaps a selection of the work done by us and collaborators during 2014 that can help you encourage buy-in and uptake of peer support.

November 2014 Special Issue – Tell Your Story

To celebrate the individual and collective impact of peer support around the world, we recently asked peer supporters, program staff, and recipients of peer support to share their personal stories. In this document, you’ll find a selection of the stories that we collected. We hope that you will feel as inspired and moved by these stories as we were.

October 2014 – From Planning to Action

How do you encourage people to take action to move peer support programs forward? For us, it means educating people, showing them concrete benefits, and helping them experience peer support first-hand. In this newsletter, we share two spotlights from our recent efforts to promote peer support and strengthen links between peer support and health care professionals. For the first feature, we organized a delegation of peer supporters to participate in the annual meeting of the American Association of Diabetes Educators. In the second, we share our insights from leading training workshops for health care providers in China to nurture the adoption of peer support programs.

September 2014 – “Peer Support Works and People Like It”

This summer, Peers for Progress developed resources to help promote peer support as a sustained part of our health care system. Communicating the effectiveness of peer support is an important first step, but often isn’t enough to convince those outside of the field that this is something our system needs. On the other hand, it’s easy to get behind peer support when we help others to realize how it humanizes health care and provides the human touch that is so often missing.

August 2014 – Latino Communities Spur Growth of CHWs

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the community health worker (CHW) workforce is expected to increase by 25% in the next 8 years. This growth is being led by Latino communities that have already achieved great strides using the CHW model. In support of CHW programs on the ground, an expanding body of research confirms that CHWs will be playing even bigger roles in Latino health in the years to come. The evidence gives us strong reasons to champion CHWs as a strategy for alleviating Latino health disparities. This month’s spotlight features MHP Salud’s mobile app to streamline data collection and improve the efficiency of their CHW services.

July 2014 – Great Challenges in Peer Support

As the evidence base for peer support grows stronger, our attention turns to the most pressing challenges for the future of the field. This issue of the Peers for Progress newsletter looks at scaling up peer support to state and national levels. And under program resources, you’ll find briefs that touch on quality assurance and sustainability.

June 2014 – Peer Support Finds Heart in San Francisco

From June 17-18, Peers for Progress and the National Council of La Raza hosted a meeting of Peers for Progress investigators and the National Peer Support Collaborative Learning Network in San Francisco, California. Over two packed days, we reviewed the state of the evidence in peer support for diabetes management and looked ahead to the future. Reminded of our common principles and the importance of this work, we found in San Francisco the vision and the resolve to move forward. In this newsletter, you can read our reflections and find resources developed for the meeting.

May 2014 – Sustainable Financing for Peer Support Within Reach

For a long time, peer support programs have been funded by a patchwork of short-term grant funding. Within the past ten years, states have started to recognize the benefits of financing peer support programs through dependable channels of reimbursement. Our spotlight this month looks at sustainable financing models for peer support and key trends to watch for in the future. Additional information on financing may be found in the program resources section

April 2014 – How Can Peer Support Address Our Nation’s Healthcare Challenges?

This month, Peers for Progress and the National Council of La Raza released “Peer Support in Health – Evidence to Action“, a report from the first annual conference of the National Peer Support Collaborative Learning Network. The spotlight this month continues the conversation on accreditation of peer support programs, highlighting the recent successes of the Council on Accreditation of Peer Recovery Support Services.

March 2014 – Quality Assurance in Peer Support Programs

From last year’s meeting of the National Peer Support Collaborative Learning Network (NPSCLN), quality assurance emerged as a priority issue. We hope that this month’s program spotlight on Accreditation & Certification in Peer Support will launch a healthy discussion on different approaches to quality assurance for peer support. You can also check out our featured quality assurance resources on the Peers for Progress website.

February 2014 – Better Communicators, Bigger Impacts

Anyone that has worked in counseling can attest to the importance of communication skills for developing relationships and building motivation for behavior change. This issue of the newsletter shares some insights into how peer support programs can strengthen their communication trainings to help achieve bigger, lasting impacts. We also share some useful resources on key communication skills for peer support.

January 2014 – Diabetes Peer Support in the Western Pacific Region

The Western Pacific Region is home to a third of all people with diabetes and has the highest number of deaths attributable to diabetes. Participants at the World Diabetes Congress in Melbourne affirmed the potential impact of peer support on the burden of diabetes in the Western Pacific Region. You can read the PfP Global Director’s commentary in this issue’s spotlight. Our second spotlight this month recognizes a peer-led diabetes self-management support intervention in Vietnam. Unique to this program, and critical to its success, was that it used group education sessions to provide a warm hand-off for peers and peer leaders, providing opportunities to build rapport and practice peer support.

Winter 2013

Across six continents, 14 PfP grantees who were funded in 2009 have tested and evaluated what peer support would look like for diabetes self-management under a variety of cultural and socio-economic conditions. In the greater China region, PfP continued to guide the growth of peer support with collaborators in China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. Read our annual highlights in this issue’s program spotlight.

October 2013

Peer support is being established as a key strategy in all phases of cancer care. For Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we’re taking a look at how women with breast cancer and survivors are going online to find peer support. In this issue, you’ll find resources for cancer support groups developed by Cancer Australia and Cancer Council Australia, as well as the latest research in the field.

September 2013

This month, Peers for Progress brings you a featured spotlight on Pakistan’s Lady Health Worker program, which employs nearly 110,000 community health workers across the entire country. You’ll find more information about this ambitious program under resources and research briefs. This issue also provides a first look at two Work Group products from the National Peer Support Collaborative Learning Network.

August 2013

From our experience working with healthcare and community organizations to develop and implement peer support programs, Peers for Progress has faced many challenges related to workforce development and capacity building. This month, our spotlight focuses on emerging issues in peer workforce and capacity building. You can also visit the PfP blog for more discussions on this topic.

July 2013

This month’s newsletter offers several practical tools for peer support programs. In the program spotlight, you can read about our electronic program monitoring system for diabetes peer support. Under program resources, you can find manuals, scripts, and handouts developed by the University of Michigan and the Morehouse School of Medicine.

June 2013

In this newsletter, we discuss some innovative applications of peer support in the Affordable Care Act. Our spotlight discusses how peer support can help hospitals reduce readmission rates and avoid costly penalties. You will also find resources on the use of community health workers for patient navigation and addressing health disparities.

May 2013

Peer support programs can strengthen primary care practice and community health, reaching vulnerable populations and reducing health disparities. Through the work of promotores, it can even address the social determinants of health. In this issue of the PfP newsletter, we spotlight a peer health coaching program in a primary care setting that has helped low-income, minority patients manage their diabetes. You will also find program resources and research briefs about the impact of peer support on disadvantaged populations.

April 2013

Training peer supporters is one of the first steps in program implementation, laying the groundwork for a successful intervention. This issue of Peers for Progress newsletter features our reflections on a joint training initiative for peer support in Taiwan. Check out the program resources section for training manuals and resources developed by Peers for Progress affiliates.

March 2013

In this issue, the program spotlight features Diabetes Sisters, an organization that provides education and support for women with diabetes. Featured resources include a useful guide prepared by the National Diabetes Education Program and a peer coach training curriculum developed at UCSF. We are also excited to share three recent research articles authored by Peers for Progress grantees.

February 2013

In honor of Black History Month, this issue of the Peers for Progress newsletter is dedicated to the work being done in peer support in African American communities. In both urban and rural programs, peer support has been helping people with health issues such as diabetes, depression, cancer, and HIV. Our program spotlight features two peer support interventions in African American communities: Encourage, a diabetes peer support intervention in rural Alabama, and Circles of Care, an advanced stage cancer peer support program in North Carolina.

January 2013

At the start of this new year, Peers for Progress is making strides on two projects. Our National Peer Support Collaborative Learning Network work groups are moving forward and the website has been expanded to include peer support for mental health. Given our focus on mental health in this month’s newsletter, we feature an article on the value of peer support for survivors of traumatic events.

December 2012

In this final newsletter of 2012, Peers for Progress is pleased to share with you some of our highlights from the past year. This issue’s selection of program resources and research briefs also reflect recent trends, such as the development of statewide policies on community health workers, the importance of supporting peer volunteers, and increased interest in building collaboration between clinical pharmacists and community health workers.

October 2012

Hispanic Heritage Month was celebrated from September 15 to October 15. Peers for Progress recognizes the important contributions that promotores are making to Latino community health. PfP is working with the National Council of La Raza, the largest national Hispanic advocacy organization in the United States, to support and advance the work of promotores across the country. In this issue of the newsletter,  we share some recent scientific literature on promotores as well as two resources for promotores and community health workers. Our featured story explores the recently revised National Standards for Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support.

September 2012

In this issue, we reflect on the successes of Peers for Progress projects over the summer. As part of our continuing commitment to encourage young researchers in peer support and to strengthen our collaboration with network members in Southeast Asia, PfP sponsored two masters students to conduct a qualitative study on Village Health Volunteers in Thailand. In August, PfP was pleased to join in the launch of Mi Salud Es Primero at Alivio Medical Center in Chicago. We also share a useful guide from Catholic Relief Services for working with community health workers.

Summer 2012

Peers for Progress unveils a revamped website and surges into social media as part of an integrated e-strategy. This issue spotlights Peers for Progress’ recent piloting of social media strategies. Use the lessons that we’ve learned and the resources provided to adapt social media tools for your peer support programs.

May 2012

In this May newsletter we spotlight the success of the Diabetes Buddies Program in South Africa, share a 3 part series of blog posts on the Peers for Progress Blog by Maurtis van Pelt on MoPo Tsyo’s experience in peer support interventions in Cambodia and provide Public Health-Seattle & King County’s Peer Support program  resources  for Achieving Independence in Diabetes (Peer-AID).

April 2012

In this newsletter we highlight a Pioneering Peer Support for Diabetes Education and Management in China, provide Washington State’s Certified Peer Counselor Training Manual and  include research briefs on Peer Support in childhood asthma, increasing physical activity in low income Latina Women and Assessing Feasibility of Peer Supporters in Telephone-based Diabetes Support.

March 2012

This month’s newsletter spotlights the Peers for Progress network conference in China entitled Emerging Dragon Forum and Working Meeting. This conference was attended by over 30 leaders representing Chinese government agencies, health professional groups/foundations, leading academic institutions and health care service organizations.This issue also includes a wonderful resource from Minnesota Community Health Workers Alliance’s website of sample job description examples for hiring community health workers.

February 2012

This newsletter highlights the Alivio Medical Center and Its Compañeros en Salud Program. It also provides the topics, presenters and other information about the Peers for Progress presentations at the 2012 SBM conference in New Orleans.  Research briefs include an article by Andreae  and colleagues on recruiting and collecting data in rural Alabama.

January 2012

This newsletter spotlights the World Diabetes Congress hosted by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) in Dubai. Peers for Progress and colleagues from the Network spoke on a wide variety of topics including peer support program design, implementation and the use of novel technologies in peer support interventions. Other key items include an IDF Peer leader manual and a CDC’s CHW Manual for Preventing Heart Disease and Stroke.

December 2011

This newsletter covers an innovative program by Sangaunprasit and colleagues that rained Village Health Volunteers in Thailand, to provide practical, social and emotional support to those with diabetes in both rural and urban settings. This issue also spotlights the Back Pack Health Worker Team (BPHWT) a non-profit organization that has been delivering primary health care to rural and conflict areas in Burma for over a decade.

October 2011

This newsletter reports the workforce development accomplished through Peers for Progress partnering with peer support programs around the world and public health students at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to create mentored experiences across 4 sites in China, Mexico and Australia in the summer of 2011. This issue also contains a report on the Peers for Progress summer meeting in China with collaborators from the Chinese Society of Behavioral Medicine, the Chinese Diabetes Society- Diabetes Care and Education Group, and the global Peers for Progress community to promote peer support in China.

September 2011

This month’s newsletter highlights the Taiwanese models for peer support including  the role the Taiwanese government has taken in encouraging this type of intervention for chronic disease prevention and management. These groups have a strong linkage to primary care through public health centers, as well as sponsoring a network of peer support organizations for diabetes.The Newsletter also provides links to slides from a webinar presentation by Dr. Robinson Beale on peer support for military families.

August 2011

This newsletter spotlights the Taiwan Breast Cancer Alliance and the College Diabetes Network. The Tawain Breast Cancer Alliance shares its comprehensive approach to addressing the needs of women with breast cancer and influencing government policy, including ongoing support, health education, family and spouse involvement, partnership with the providers, and advocacy. The College Diabetes Network creates support networks, web-based resources and collaborates with others to serve young adults with Type 1 diabetes at U.S. college.

July 2011

This month’s Peers for Progress highlights the Cancer Connect program in Victoria Australia. Cancer Connect strategically utilizes a targeted telephone-based peer support intervention, including trained volunteers who have been through a similar cancer experience plus assistance in volunteer matching. This newsletter also highlights the Chronic Illness Alliance (CIA) Peer Support Network’s Best Practice Framework that covers aspects of developing and managing a volunteer-based peer support program.

June 2011

This newsletter spotlights the MoPo Tsyo’s Peer Educator Networks (PEN) in Cambodia. These networks show how innovations can provide new answers in the struggle to provide accessible and affordable care and support for people with diabetes in a low-resource setting. The June newsletter also provides a report on the Eyes Wide Open…Learning More about Peer Support from Around the World Meeting in Malaysia . The report  is organized around four domains: (a) Program Development, (b) Evidence and Evaluation, (c) Sustainability and Institutionalization, and (d) Generalize-ability and Advocacy.

May 2011

This month’s newsletter includes the Peers for Progress presentations from the 2011 SBM conference. Additionally,the Vermont Blueprint for Health model reveals that community health teams in Medical Homes create a crucial link between primary care and community-based prevention of chronic disease. Community health workers (CHWs) on the team provide social support, and assist patients in daily living including connecting them to local resources. This newsletter also continues the WHO report on the global evidence of Community Health Workers.

April 2011

This newsletter highlights the Public Health- Seattle & King County (PHSKC) community health worker programs that provide peer support through home visits to low-income ethnically diverse families. With 14 years of extensive work focused on asthma and diabetes, PHSKC has developed core approaches applicable to both areas.  Also included this month is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recent policy brief for facilitating the integration of CHWs into current community-based chronic disease management efforts.

March 2011

This month features a rejoinder from Peers for Progress to a paper posted by the British Medical Journal online, “Peer Support for Patients with Type 2 Diabetes: Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial”, that featured disappointing null findings from peer-led discussion groups. It is noted that details of the intervention point out important differences from widely endorsed features of peer support and call into question the generality of these null findings. This month also highlights a community-based peer support program serving older adults with diabetes in the Anhui Province of China.  To our knowledge, this study is the first in China to emphasize peer support outside of formal group meetings.

February 2011

This months newsletter puts the spotlight on a peer support program  for diabetes  in rural Uganda. The program shares its innovative use of mobile technology in this low-resourced setting, and the implications for delivery of peer support in similar settings. An educational booklet, Peer Partner Training Booklet, in both English and Luganda was produced and shared on the Peers for Progress website.

January 2011

This newsletter welcomed the Black Creek Community Health Centre’s Diabetes Education Program as a new member of the Peers for Progress global network. Its collaborative initiative, Live, Learn and Share: Diabetes Peer Support Group Project, trained residents with diabetes from the Black Caribbean community to be peer facilitators, and involved them to develop a peer support group guide. Also featured is information about the World Diabetes Day celebration from the Mo Po Tsyo Patient Information Centre.

A community-based peer support program serves older adults with Diabetes in Anhui Province of China. The program shares its key feature of taking advantage of the community and health system settings. To our knowledge, this study is the first in China to emphasize peer support outside of formal group meetings.


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