Hunter 4 22 21SPRINGFIELD – A bill introduced by State Senator Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) to ensure the provisions in the Community Health Worker Certification and Reimbursement Act are fully implemented was signed into law Tuesday.

“With this follow-up legislation to the health care pillar, we can finally bring the proper certification to these essential health workers,” Hunter said. “I am happy that we could further address the needs of community health workers."

House Bill 158 became law in April, addressing a wide array of issues, including health care access, managed care organization reform, maternal and infant mortality, mental and substance abuse treatment, medical implicit bias, and more.

Senate Bill 336 will expedite the full implementation of the Community Health Worker Certification program that was part of House Bill 158. It also makes changes to reporting dates for commissions, task forces and boards created under the law.

“It’s imperative that community health workers have a valid process toward certification,” Hunter said. “The work they do is vital across communities, especially during the ongoing pandemic. We can’t reform the industry without considering the needs of frontline workers.”

The health care pillar was part of the Black Caucus’ four pillar agenda to eradicate systemic racism in the state. The remaining pillars, criminal justice, education and economic access, were all signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker this year as well.

The CHW provisions in Senate Bill 336 are effective immediately.