Community Health Worker / Peer Recovery Specialist

Miriam Hospital ER
Two openings available!
Experience in South Providence Preferred
CHW or PRS Certification within one year

The Community Health Worker/Peer Recovery Specialist (CHW/PRS) is a diverse and integral position here at Lifespan. The CHW/PRS focuses on addressing Social Determinants of Health and provides patients with individualized support around their specific longitudinal healthcare and social needs. CHWs/PRSs assess patient needs create a plan of care with the patient and implement the plan to help the person reach the identified goals. The CHW/PRS helps with the navigation of social supports including basic needs support housing justice system involvement retrieving vital documents immigration status support substance use treatment and harm reduction referrals and referrals to health providers obtaining health insurance and income transportation and more. CHWs/PRSs are expected to understand the basic principles of chronic disease management so that they can support clients in achieving their health goals as defined in collaboration with a physician or clinical provider. 


The applicant should be a dynamic motivated individual with thorough knowledge of local social services and community resources. They should also understand what the Community Health Worker/Peer Specialist frameworks represent how to integrate the frameworks into their direct care work and how to translate these frameworks to care teams in the hospital and in other care settings. Patients being supported by CHW/PRSs are some of the most vulnerable and have a multitude of health issues that need to be addressed. CHW/PRSs should understand Trauma Informed Care and how to utilize tools such as Motivational Interviewing to help the patient identify their needs and support them in the most effective ways.

The applicant should have completed Community Health Worker and/or Peer Recovery Specialist training upon hire or they will need to complete the CHW and/or PRS training within one year of hire.

Specifically the role of the CHW/PRS is to:

Work collaboratively on a large interdisciplinary team while utilizing an integrated client care model in conjunction with best practices.

Engage in effective motivational interviewing street outreach and case management and documentation of all patient encounters.

Facilitation collaboration with the medical home-primary care providers and specialists social services case managers social workers and mental health professionals to deliver interventions that will address social needs and maximize patient health outcomes.

Advocate for patients in community settings and/or with other systems and partner agencies to prevent unnecessary eviction incarceration loss of income utilities shut off and other negative social outcomes.

Use professional judgement when responding to crises and understanding the importance of a team approach to handling traumas experienced by patients. and adhere to established policies to respond to patient crises including but not limited to loss of housing relapse suicidality and medical emergencies.


Under supervision of the CHW/PRS Supervisor and with oversight from the Manager of Discharge Planning the CHW/PRS is responsible for performing the following essential job functions:

Complete initial assessments with the patient and providers to identify specific areas of need patient strengths and barriers to care

Work to build a trusting and supportive relationship through continued rapport building techniques

Help patients develop and maintain systems to manage their care through goal setting and motivational interviewing

Provide patients with education about how to address their personal needs in order to build self-efficacy

Educate patients about substance use disorder treatment options and facilitate initiation of and referral to evidence-based treatment including medications for opioid use disorder. This includes supporting the process of administering buprenorphine in the ED.

Educate patients about their medical diagnoses and support them in connecting with specialists and medical care teams for follow up care.

Referral and navigation to community harm reduction addiction treatment recovery and medical based services

Help to address any logistical barriers scheduling complications childcare needs etc. that would prevent a patient from showing up to their appointments.

Accompany patients to appointments with health care and social services providers when needed to provide support and advocacy.

Coordinate and collaborate with the patient�s care team (existing health care providers case workers social workers etc.). Mobilize existing team members to action on behalf of the patient.

Document care coordination notes in the EMR (electronic medical record).

Follow up with case load weekly.

Shifts may vary pending program

Some weekends are required pending program

Compete other job duties as assigned. 

Other information:


Two (2) years of verifiable experience providing information education intervention and/or referral services to culturally diverse populations. Recent experience (last 5 years) working as part of a multi-disciplinary team in a health care setting preferred.

Community Health Worker certification and/or Peer Recovery Specialist certification in Rhode Island preferred. Must be completed within 1 year of hire date.

Experience working with health care systems substance use treatment programs and/or community-based organizations.

Experience with motivational interviewing advising/counseling clients and/or participating in health promotion and health education activities.

Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

Excellent organization thorough record-keeping follow through and ability to juggle multiple priorities in a fast-paced environment with multiple collaborators.

Demonstrated excellent attendance and reliability.

Willingness to travel to and work in various environments including The Department of Corrections and court settings street outreach home visits at patient�s residence or homeless encampment.

Intermediate computer skills including Microsoft Office and scheduling.

If performing an assignment that requires driving must have a good driving record meet and maintain the appropriate and valid driver�s license in order to operate motor vehicles as required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations in accordance with the Lifespan Fleet Risk Control Policy.

Applicants should have experience working in South Providence and experience working with formerly incarcerated individuals LGBT individuals BBIPOC individuals and those who are disproportionally burdened by health and justice inequities and/or people with severe mental health issues.

People with lived experience with substance use history of incarceration and living with a chronic health condition(s) and/or has been impacted by social inequities are strongly encouraged to apply.

Prior experience using an electronic medical record preferred

Bilingual English/Spanish preferred.

How to Apply

See listing on Lifespan’s website here and apply.