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Community Health Representative

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As part of the IHS mission to raise the physical, mental, social, environmental, and spiritual health of American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) individuals and communities to the highest level, the IHS Community Health Representative Program (CHRP) aims to create a workforce that improves health across the communities they serve.

Funded with IHS-CHR appropriations, the Community Health Representative (CHR) is a well-trained, medically guided tribal or Native community-based health care provider who may include traditional Native concepts in his/her work. CHRP is a unique community-based outreach program, staffed by a cadre of well-trained, medically-guided, tribal and Native community people who provide a variety of health services within AI/AN communities.

The CHR is a unique concept for providing health care, health promotion, and disease prevention services. The demand for CHRs is growing. CHRs have demonstrated how much they assist and connect the community, and their work has become essential to IHS facilities. The CHRs are great advocates because they come from the communities they serve and know specific tribal healthcare needs; and their dedication to their work has helped many who have had trouble having their healthcare needs met. The health promotion and disease prevention efforts that representatives provide have helped people from the community improve and maintain their health. CHRs have also contributed to lowering mortality rates through providing education and reducing tribal health expenses. CHRs reach out and help people on an individual basis and are an important part of IHS facility operations.

If you are interested in training to become a CHR, please contact your local IHS facility to find out more.