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Announcing Mental Health America's National Certified Peer Specialist Credential! 

After years of development, Mental Health America is proud to announce the release of our MHA National Certified Peer Specialist (NCPS) credential. This first national advanced credential lets peers show they have the highest levels of knowledge and experience to create new opportunities in public and private settings. Having the NCPS credentials shows employers they are getting the best.

From improving quality of life to inspiring hope to keeping people out of the hospital, we know peer support works and has the potential to transform systems, services, and supports. While it has made major progress in community mental health, it has not been broadly accepted by the private sector. Based on our research with insurers, private practitioners, and healthcare companies, it became very clear that acceptance would require a uniform standard that exceeds current standards.

Developed with the input of thousands of peers and leaders from both public and private sectors, MHA's NCPS credential is true to the core values of peer support and creates the high, uniform standards needed for expansion into the private sector.

It is not meant to replace existing certifications or trainings but builds upon current standards to ensure peers are able to thrive in a growing workforce with increasing job opportunities and levels of pay. The certification is examination based and requires knowledge outside of most current trainings. We are in the process of designating approved trainings and an increasing list will be maintained here.

The MHA NCPS Certification requires:

  • A minimum of a year and a half's documented experience (3,000 hours)
  • A minimum of a High School Diploma/GED
  • In-depth knowledge in 6 domains of practices (Foundations of Peer Support; Foundations of Healthcare Systems; Mentoring, Shared Learning, and Relationship Building; Activation and Self-Management; Advocacy; and Personal and Ethical Responsibilities)
  • Prior state certification requiring a minimum of 40 hours of peer support training OR completion of a MHA approved training and employment in a peer support role
  • A passing score on in-person moderated examination

Learn more about the MHA National Certified Peer Specialist credential at www.CenterforPeerSupport.orgA limited number of scholarships for the application and examination are available through

The MHA NCPS credential was developed by Mental Health America in partnership with the Florida Certification Board with additional funding through the Alkermes Inspiration Grant program and a gift from Mental Health America's Anonymous Donor.