All health coaches at BeneFIT Corporate WellnessSM recently received National Board Certification for Health and Wellness Coaches, after passing the first-ever exam to qualify for the new standard. The newly adopted certification confirms the expertise and quality of coaches based upon standards created by the International Consortium for Health & Wellness Coaches (ICHWC) and the National Board of Medical Examiners.
“There are more wellness companies and coaching programs available than ever before, and it’s important that employers and consumers have a way to assess coaching quality,” says Kristin Behler, Director, Health Promotion and Wellness at Populytics, Inc., a population health management and health care analytics firm in eastern Pennsylvania that encompasses BeneFIT Corporate Wellness services. “Along with our recent Accreditation in Wellness and Health Promotion from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), this board certification is an excellent complement to the high standards upheld by the BeneFIT coaching program.”
The establishment of national standards is the first step in advancing consistent training, education, and assessment of programs’ and individuals’ competencies, as well as enabling growth of an evidence base to which future measures can be determined. Since 2010, the ICHWC has been researching the knowledge, tasks, skills, and core competencies essential to the practice of health and wellness coaching in order to develop coaching quality standards. Once the elements of quality were identified, the ICHWC validated them with a national survey. Through partnership with the National Board of Medical Examiners, the results were transferred into a comprehensive examination, administered for the first time in September 2017.
Health coaches who have been board certified through the ICHWC can be recognized by the credentials “NBC-HWC” after their names. Additional board certification exams will take place in June and November 2018, after which the exam will be available twice a year.