Become a CPV

I remember thinking that living life with one leg was worse than not living life at all. I really, honestly did…[Then] a young boy with an artificial leg came into my hospital room for a visit. I don’t remember what he said. I don’t remember what he looked like. I was so transfixed on his prosthesis as he walked into my room. That’s all I needed to give me the personal strength to go on…
Ted Kennedy, Jr.

What is a Certified Peer Visitor (CPV)?

The Amputee Coalition’s Certified Peer Visitors are trained volunteers who provide information and support for individuals about to undergo an amputation or who currently have limb loss/difference.

There are three categories of peer visitors that we train:

  1. A person with limb loss or limb difference
  2. A family member of a person with limb loss or limb difference
  3. Military / VA : an individual with current or previous military or VA experience who is living with limb loss or limb difference

How can I become a CPV?

Becoming a CPV involves completing an 8-hour training course offered at one of our hospital or rehab partners or in conjunction with a support group. To follow volunteer standards set by most hospitals and non-profits, we also ask that you successfully complete a background check.

The trainings help you recognize the elements of recovery and how to respond with helpful interventions during different phases of emotional adjustment. Once certified, the new CPV will receive a certificate, name badge, business cards and start making peer visits when requested.

If you are interested in having a CPV training class scheduled in your area, please email to learn more about hosting a local CPV training class or registering for one.

CPV Re-certification

Certified Peer Visitors (CPVs) are required to update their certification every two years through an online recertification webinar and post-test. Re-certification reminders will be emailed in advance of the CPV expiration date with instructions and details on the re-certification process. All volunteers with the Amputee Coalition are required to complete a background check. A $17 re-certification background check fee is required every four years through our third party background check company.

More Information

CPV Training and Certification FAQs

Are there costs involved?
There is a $40 registration fee that supports that cost to administer the training classes and background checks. There is no longer an additional fee for background checks or training manuals. There may be a fee to cover the cost of food provided during the training. Please contact your peer visitor trainer to determine exact fee.

How often are trainings offered?
CPV trainings are offered, as needed, at partner hospital and rehab facilities. Facilities will typically host 1 to 4 trainings each year. Trainings are also offered at the request of support groups that are willing to host a training. Every year, each region of the country typically has about 1 to 3 trainings at a support group. If you are a support group leader and would like to host a CPV training, please complete this form.

Can you notify me when there is a training in my area?
If you would like us to contact you when there is a CPV training in your region, please email with your name, city and state.

Why were the background checks added?
Like most healthcare organizations, we are committed to the professionalism and training of our volunteers. This is one aspect that is becoming more and more common: asking people who are visiting vulnerable adults and children to have a background check. It builds trust and confidence in the program even before you step through the door or call on the phone.

Do I have to use a certain background check company?
We have researched several to be sure that your information is guarded and kept confidential. You will contact the company to start the process and pay for the background check. Your identifying information (like your Social Security number) will not be transferred to the Amputee Coalition. We will have access to your background check, housed in the background check company’s secure systems, but will not store or share the information as part of the peer visitor registration process.

I’ve never had a background check. What is included? What would disqualify me?
These background checks will include items like checking for criminal history and predator registration. We will always consider the severity and how recent any incident is. Typically, things like a felony conviction will disqualify an applicant.