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The Certified Hospice and Palliative Social Worker (CHP-SW)

Social Work Excellence within Hospice and Palliative Care Settings

A bachelor’s level social worker in hospice and palliative care can be defined as the discipline that provides a professional continuum of services that address the psychosocial needs of patients and families affected by serious and life limiting illness in order to maintain, or improve, their optimal quality of life. Social work activities are focused on the bio-psychosocial components of health and mental health from a strengths-based perspective, and intervention is based on an evolving plan of care that developed in the context of, and contributes to the interdisciplinary team’s comprehensive plan of care.

The NASW Specialty Certification program was launched in 2000 in response to growing workforce trends and societal needs requiring specialization and to help Association members attain: enhanced professional and public recognition; increase visibility as specialized social workers; and Association with a select group of specialized social workers who have attained national recognition. The CHP-SW was added in 2009 with the support and partnership of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) as the, BSW level,  premier national credential in hospice and palliative care tailored to capture the specialized knowledge, skills, and abilities of professional social workers in hospice and palliative care settings.


  • A Bachelor’s degree in social work from a graduate program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education
  • Twenty (20) or more CEU’s related specifically to hospice and palliative care.
  • Documentation of at least three (3) years of supervised social work experience in hospice and palliative care.
  • Current state license to practice as a professional social worker.*
  • Adherence to the NASW Code of Ethics and NASW Standards for End of Life Care.

* BSW’s who practice in states that do not license social workers at that level have additional experience (4 years) and CEU (40 contact hours)

Are you qualified to apply?

Please read and review the complete criteria in the application.

Please contact the Credentialing Center at, if you have any questions.

NASW Credentialing Center
More than 50 years of experience developing credentials and certifications for social workers
National Association of Social Workers, 750 First Street, NE • Suite 800, Washington, DC 20002
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