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Peer Support Specialist Duties and Responsibilities

In order to provide support to patients based on personal experience, a Peer Support Specialist performs many different tasks. We analyzed job listings for Peer Support Specialists in order to identify these core duties and responsibilities.

Support Patients The Peer Support Specialist first and foremost uses their personal experiences to develop meaningful and trusting relationships with patients, acting as a mentor. As someone who successfully managed their own recovery, the Peer Support Specialist provides patients an example of what they can strive for in their recovery.

Coordinate Patient Logistics In order to support the facility, the Peer Support Specialist handles some of the logistics of patient arrival and departure. This includes arranging transportation for the patient, managing follow-up appointments, and working with facility administrators and discharge staff members.

Build Community The Peer Support Specialist works to build a community of both patients and staff that is supportive and conducive to patient growth and recovery. They assist in the creation and implementation of social activities and help create a positive environment for everyone.

Identify Resources for Patients Peer Support Specialists link up with various community organizations and resources to provide additional support for patients, particularly as they transition from recovery back into the general community. This can include continued healthcare, housing, job assistance, and additional treatment services as well as support in the task of finding or re-integrating with friends, family, and outside communities.


Peer Support Specialist Skills

Peer Support Specialists are highly compassionate individuals who have excellent communication and interpersonal skills. It is crucial to their role that they be capable of building trust and forming impactful relationships with their patients. They also possess first-hand experience that allows them to connect more deeply with their patients. Core skills: Based on job listings we looked at, employers want Peer Support Specialists with these core skills. If you want to work as a Peer Support Specialist, focus on the following.
  • Obtaining a High School Diploma
  • Demonstrating peer support or mental health experience
  • Having personal experience relevant to services provided
  • Being able to obtain Peer Support Specialist certification
  • Being able to travel, sometimes daily, in local area
Advanced skills: While most employers did not require the following skills, multiple job listings included them as preferred. Add these to your Peer Support Specialist toolbox and broaden your career options.
  • Extensive knowledge of community services
  • Possession of a license and vehicle
  • Fluency in a second language
  • Bachelor degree
  • Knowledge of Medicaid care

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