National Practice Guidelines
for Peer Supporters
In the summer of 2013, the International Association of Peer Supporters issued the following document following a six-month, inclusive process in which 1000 peer support providers gave input through focus groups or surveys with 98% agreement on twelve core values of peer support. Some of the values had originally been identified in the guide, “Engaging Women in Trauma Informed Peer Support,” based largely on Shery Mead’s work with Intentional Peer Support, with additional contributions from the World Health Organization QualityRights Toolkit and an expert panel at SAMHSA that included subject matter experts from both the mental health and substance use communities.
Following the focus groups and surveys, Steve Harrington summarized what people who participated in the process said the twelve core values would look like in practice and issued the Practice Guidelines as a voluntary effort and gift to the members of iNAPS and the practice of peer support as a whole. These National Practice guidelines have since been shared and used around the world to inform best practices in peer support globally.
from other organizations
Peer Support Accreditation and Certification in
Promoting peer support as a valued and respected service offering is at the core of the PSACC Mission. All activities related to certification, research, and conferences continue to maintain that focus and align with the (Canadian) National Standards of Practice.
In 2015, SAMHSA led an effort to identify the critical knowledge, skills, and abilities (leading to Core Competencies) needed by anyone who provides peer support services to people with or in recovery from a mental health or substance use condition. SAMHSA—via its Bringing Recovery Supports to Scale Technical Assistance Center Strategy (BRSS TACS) project—convened diverse stakeholders from the mental health consumer and substance use disorder recovery movements to achieve this goal.
SAMHSA in conjunction with subject matter experts conducted research to identify Core Competencies for peer workers in behavioral health. SAMHSA later posted the draft competencies developed with these stakeholders online for comment. This additional input helped refine the Core Competencies and this document represents the final product of that process.
The Association for Addiction Professionals
Nationally Certified Addiction Recovery Support Specialist (NCPRSS)
Addiction Recovery Support Specialists are individuals who are in recovery from substance use or co-occurring disorders. Their life experiences and recovery allow them to provide recovery support in such way that others can benefit from their experiences.
The purpose of the National Addiction Recovery Support Specialist Credential is to standardize the knowledge and competency of recovery support to individuals with substance use and co-occurring disorders.
Mental Health America
National Whole Health Peer Specialist Certification (under development)
This credential is designed to meet and exceed the standards used in public behavioral health around the country. The certification will require enhanced training and substantial work experience. A major purpose of the certification is to meet the needs of private health insurers and private practitioners. Expansion of peer support into the private sector will open up new career paths and opportunities, which have been previously unexplored, for thousands of peer supporters.Click here to learn more about the Whole Health Peer Specialist Certification
Leave a comment below about the various guidance documents shown here, or any others that you would highly recommend to peer support providers and those who work with them.