National Health Center Week set for beginning of August

National Health Center Week (August 4-10) is an annual celebration with the goal of raising awareness about the mission and accomplishments of America’s health centers over the past five decades.

Health centers serve 28 million patients – a number that continues to grow along with the demand for affordable primary care. In addition to their long history as healthcare homes to millions, health centers produce innovative solutions to the most pressing healthcare issues in their communities and reach beyond the walls of conventional medicine to address the social determinants of health affecting special patient populations.

This year’s NHCW 2019 will highlight how health centers are at the forefront of a nationwide shift in addressing environmental and social factors as an integral part of primary care, reaching beyond the walls of conventional medicine to address the factors that may cause sickness, such as lack of nutrition, mental illness, homelessness and substance use disorders.  Community Health Centers’ success in managing chronic disease in medically vulnerable communities has helped reduce healthcare costs for American taxpayers.

Health centers are consumer-driven and patient-centered organizations that serve as a comprehensive and cost-effective primary healthcare option for America’s most underserved communities. Health centers serve everyone regardless of ability to pay or insurance status. They increase access to healthcare and provide integrated care services based on the unique needs of the communities they serve. Health centers deliver value to and have a significant impact on America’s healthcare system. They also:

  • Serve as the healthcare home for more than 28 million patients in over 11,000 communities across the country.
  • Reduce healthcare costs and produce savings – on average, health centers save 24 percent per Medicaid patient when compared to other providers.
  • Integrate critical medical and social services such as oral health, mental health, substance abuse, case management and translation under one roof.
  • Employ over 220,000 people and generate at least $54.6 billion in total economic activity in some of the nation’s most distressed communities.
  • Provide care to 1.4 million homeless patients and more than 350,000 veterans.

Health centers in Kentucky are economic drivers. Every $1 in federal investments generates $5.20 in economic activity across Kentucky. In total, health centers in Kentucky deliver $741.3 million in economic activity.

Health Centers in Kentucky
# of Grantee Organizations 24
# of Delivery Sites 275 FTEs
% Grantees with PCMH Recognition 63%
% Grantees w/ Staff Authorized to Prescribe Medication- Assisted Treatment (MAT) for Opioid Use Disorder 29%
% of Grantees Utilizing Telehealth 33%


Kentucky Health Center Patients
Children Served 137,018
Homeless Patients Served 15,173
Veterans Served 8,625
Growth in Patients since 2010 68%
Total Patients 461,552


  Kentucky Health Center Patients Kentucky Residents US Residents
% at or below 100 % poverty 58% 17% 13%
% at or below 200% poverty 83% 36% 31%
% racial / ethnic minority 20% 15% 39%
% uninsured 13% 4% 9%
% Medicare 12% 20% 17%
% Medicaid 47% 20% 17%


-National Association of Community Health Centers, January 2019