The New York State Department of Health is pleased to announce that, beginning in early 2016, there will be a formal process for certifying individuals as AIDS Institute Peer Workers.
This three-day training is intended for people seeking to become NYS AIDS Institute Certified Peer Workers who are either currently employed as a Peer Worker or who have been selected by an agency for possible future employment as a Peer Worker. The interactive training helps participants build the knowledge, attitudes and skills needed to use their lived experience of HIV, HCV or accessing harm reduction services as a vehicle to help clients.
By the end of this training, participants will be able to:
- Use their lived experience as the basis for providing effective prevention, harm reduction, outreach, patient-navigation and/or self-management services to clients;
- List core competencies of AIDS Institute peer workers and identify required trainings to build skills in each competency;
- Recall the NYS AIDS Institute Peer Worker Code of Ethics;
- Maintain confidentiality and appropriate boundaries when working with clients;
- Work effectively as a member of their agency’s care team;
- Follow-best practices for documenting the services they provide to clients;
- Participate effectively in case conferences with other professionals;
- Explore issues related to employment as a peer worker;
- Identify self-care strategies to address work-related stress.
AIDS Institute Peer Worker Certification Process
AIDS Institute peer workers are individuals with the lived experience of HIV, Hepatitis C or accessing harm reduction services. The AIDS Institute will offer specific tracks to certify individuals as: 1) HIV Peer Worker, 2) Hepatitis C Peer Worker, or 3) Harm Reduction Peer Worker. Individuals may choose more than one track. Certified peer workers must complete a series of required professional trainings totaling a minimum of 90 hours. The required trainings prepare peer workers to assist clients with HIV/HCV/STD prevention, harm reduction, outreach, patient navigation and/or self-management services. To become certified as an AIDS Institute Peer Worker, individuals must pass a knowledge test, abide by the NYS AIDS Institute Peer Worker Code of Ethics and successfully complete a practicum. The AIDS Institute peer certification process is intended to be a vehicle to improve client services as well as create employment opportunities for people with HIV and HCV. For more information about becoming an AIDS Institute Peer Worker please visit: www.hivtrianingny.org/abcdefg
- People seeking to become NYS AIDS Institute Certified Peer Workers who are either currently working as a Peer Worker or who have been selected by an agency for possible future employment as a Peer Worker
- Completion of a community-based peer recovery or peer readiness training or preparation of an HIV/HCV/harm reduction treatment experience statement
- Completion of at least three core courses from the required peer certification training list