To improve population health, health care organizations must reach outside their walls and engage patients in the context of their daily lives. Doing so requires seeing past traditional medical pathways defined by physiology or genetics and delving deeper into social factors that form the fabric of patients’ lives — for example, employment, housing, and social support. Thoughtful health care organizations are looking to community health workers (CHWs) — individuals from local communities who, because of shared experience and established relationships, can see and sometimes act on social issues that are invisible to outsiders. Because of their reach and low cost, CHWs are increasingly common. ….more