Newsletter Article

Medi-Cal Peer Support Specialist Certification Program Celebrates 1-Year Anniversary

Key staff: Lucero Robles, LCSW, Director, Quality Assurance

CalMHSA began its role as the certifying entity for the Medi-Cal Peer Support Specialist Program one year ago – a journey that has been focused on strengthening the county behavioral health workforce while uplifting the voice of Peers, maximizing disbursement of scholarship funding, building a standardized curriculum, and applying national standards and best practices for exam development.

With all that as a foundation, CalMHSA began offering the exam in late 2022 and now has certified more than 900 Peer specialists and awarded more than 3,500 scholarships.

Other highlights of the first year of Medi-Cal Peer Support Specialist certification:

  • Developing a Stakeholder Advisory Council and convening monthly meetings to ensure the Peer voice remains at the forefront of the program’s development  
  • Managing a grandparenting process that considers individual work experience and training for obtaining certification (deadline June 30) 
  • Standing up a dedicated website and resource library for applicants 
  • Creating a certification exam offered both online and in-person 
  • Building a  certification registry 
  • Finalizing the core competencies for four areas of specialization – parent, caregiver, family member; justice-involved; crisis care; and persons unhoused – and issuing RFPs for training providers in each specialty  
  • Approving training providers for training in core competencies leading to certification and for the parent, caregiver, family member specialization 
  • Launching the free Supervision of Peer Workers training 

    May 17, 2023