Health Navigator - August 2023

Position Status




NHC Position Type

Patient Navigator

Position Summary

PMFHC is an integrated (physical health/behavioral health) primary care center that is imbedded within a behavioral health campus, designed to address the significant disparities in health care for some of the community’s most vulnerable individuals, many of whom were already being served by the health system’s extensive behavioral health care continuum (i.e., seriously mentally ill and and/or homeless). The need is great. According to National Institute of Mental Health research, individuals with serious mental illness die on average 25 years earlier than the general population. The cause of premature death is frequently the result of chronic, but highly treatable, medical conditions, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, pulmonary disease, hypertension and cancer. These conditions can be further exacerbated by obesity; a sedentary lifestyle; poor nutrition; tobacco, alcohol and other drug use; and other unhealthy lifestyle behaviors. Care at the health center is patient-centered, team-based and holistic, with a strong emphasis on consumer engagement and intervention strategies.  

The member will function as a key part of the multi-disciplinary primary care team, providing health navigation services to patient seen in the health center or engaged in the community. In this regard the member will connect patients with services essential to their success, filling in the gaps between other team members and supportive services- to ensure seamless continuity of care. The AmeriCorps member would also develop other patient support programs including chronic disease self-management education, nutrition education, smoking cessation, and homeless outreach that are not currently occurring. Which support programs the member develops would be up to their interests and needs of our patient population. Any clinical support needed to supplement these support programs would be provided by the onsite Registered Nurse. 

Major Duties and Responsibilities

  • Providing education on how to complete paperwork
  • Providing brief health education to patients
  • Assisting in care coordination and resource referrals
  • Conducting outreach to patients via phone/letters
  • Linking patients to care by scheduling appointments
  • Quality Improvement project

Characteristics of an Ideal Candidate

  • Familiar with health equity-related issues
  • Team-oriented
  • Organized
  • Comfort speaking with others, individually or in groups
  • Compassionate

Knowledge Required for the Position

  • Knowledge of AmeriCorps/Health Corps member requirements


  • Member uses initiative in carrying out recurring assignments following set procedures, independently


  • The member independently plans and carries out the projects and selects the approaches and methods to be used in solving problems
  • Completed projects are reviewed very generally to determine that objectives have been met and are in compliance with policies and regulations.


  • Guidelines are generally applicable, but the member independently makes adaptations in dealing with problems and unusual situations


  • The facts or conditions of the service position are clear cut, predictable, and apply directly to the assignment

Criminal History Check Requirements Beyond NHC Standard Checks

In addition to NHC Standard Checks, all NHC Pittsburgh members are required to complete and pass criminal history checks for Great Lakes Behavioral Research Institute/Diversified Care Management (DCM). Great Lakes/DCM is a third party vendor contracted with the Allegheny County Health Department (operating site for NHC Pittsburgh) to distribute NHC Pittsburgh member stipends. NHC Pittsburgh members are onboarded to Great Lakes/DCM system only when the checks have been completed and the member has passed those checks.  Along with these checks, ALL NHC Pittsburgh Members Are Required to be Vaccinated against COVID-19. 

The checks that all NHC Pittsburgh members would be required to complete and pass for Great Lakes/DCM are the following: 1) Act 33 (Pennsylvania Child Abuse Clearance), 2) National Sex Offender Registry Clearance,  3) Act 34 (Pennsylvania Criminal History Clearance, and 4) Act 73 (FBI Criminal History Clearance - ONLY completed via Identogo PA).

NHC members do not have to pay for the completion of these checks. Great Lakes/DCM will distribute payment codes for the Act 33 (Pennsylvania Child Abuse Clearance) and Act 73 (FBI Criminal History Clearance which is conducted through Identogo PA (PA FBI fingerprinting agency). The National Sex Offender Registry Clearance and Act 34 (Pennsylvania Criminal History Clearance) will be completed by Great Lakes/DCM upon receiving requested information that members will be asked to submit.