CHWs and Covid-19 — Addressing Social Determinants of Health in Times of Crisis and Beyond
N Engl J Med. 2020 Sep 23. doi: 10.1056/NEJMp2022641. [Full Commentary]
Peretz PJ, Islam N, Matiz LA
New York City was the one of the first COVID-19 hot spots in the United States and necessitated a public health response that included community health workers. This piece in the New English Journal of Medicine shares experiences from New York-Presbyterian Hospital and the NYU Grossman School of Medicine, which are among the healthcare organizations that utilized CHWs into their COVID-19 response. In collaboration with community-based organizations, CHW teams proactively contacted socially isolated patients, connecting them with sources of critically important care and support. This experience has shown that, during times of crisis, CHWs may be the lone connection between some patients and an ever-changing — and increasingly digital — health care system.