Who we are
In 2007, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) approved coverage of peer support services and directed Oregon to define the training and certification requirements. The Oregon Health Authority (OHA), with the support of providers, stakeholders and the public decided to approve peer-delivered services training programs.
OAR 410-180 defines Peer Support Specialists (PSS) and Peer Wellness Specialists (PWS) as Traditional Health Workers (THW).
The OHA Health Systems Division (HSD) recognizes the value of peer-delivered services in transforming a behavioral health system of care based on recovery. The division works with consumers, survivors, stakeholders and Oregon's peer network to:
- Develop strategies to increase the use and availability of peer-delivered services (PDS);
- Influence health policy and improve enrollment and use of peers in expanded insurance options and integrated health care programs;
- Promote the development of PDS training programs and certified peers representing Oregon's diverse population, including those with military experience and young adults.
Frances Purdy, M.Ed., J.D.
Family Partnership Specialist
Health Systems Division