Advanced Certified Hospice & Palliative Social Worker (ACHP-SW)

Social Work Excellence within Hospice and Palliative Care Settings

  Download the ACHP-SW Application

Who seeks this credential?

A master’s level social worker in hospice and palliative care 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. To that end, the Advanced Certified Hospice and Palliative Social Worker (ACHP-SW) engages in direct service to patients and their families; leadership activities within organizations and communities; education; resource development; advocacy; policy initiatives and caregiver

What does this credential represent?

The ACHP-SW was created in 2008 with the support of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) at the MSW level. Tailored to capture the specialized knowledge, skills, and abilities of professional social workers in hospice and palliative care settings, the ACHP-SW is the premier credential for social workers in end-of-life care and those who practice social work in pain and symptom management.

What are the basic eligibility requirements?

  • A master’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 two (2) years of supervised social work experience in hospice and palliative care.
  • Current license to practice as a professional social worker.
  • Adherence to NASW Code of Ethics and NASW Standards for End of Life Care

Please read and review the complete criteria in the application.

About the NASW Specialty Certification Program

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.

co-workers having a conversation

Still have questions?

Read the Credentialing Center FAQ or contact the Credentialing Center at