FQHC 101

We are a federally qualified health center. Community Health Centers are a nonprofit that provides affordable health services to underserved and at-risk populations. Nationwide, CHCs serve the primary healthcare needs of over 24 million patients in more than 1,300 health centers at over 9,000 locations across America. CHCs typically offer a range of supportive services that extend beyond those traditionally offered in a primary care physician’s office.

HRSA’s Bureau of Primary Healthcare, the federal agency that provides oversight to the Health Center Program, has outlined 19 program requirements that CHCs must meet to be eligible for federal grant funding. These requirements define CHC services, the targeted needs of the patient population, management and finance, and governance. The core requirements mandate that CHCs must:

  • Offer services to all persons regardless of ability to pay.
  • Establish a sliding fee discount program.
  • Be a nonprofit or public organization.
  • Be community-based, with the majority of their governing board of directors composed of their patients.
  • Serve a medically underserved area or population.
  • Provide quality comprehensive primary care services for patients of all age groups—including medical, oral, mental, and behavioral health, and substance abuse and
    pharmacy services—regardless of insurance status, with fees adjusted based on ability to pay.
  • Provide enabling or supportive services that support access and engagement in health, such as patient and community health education, transportation, outreach, translation, eligibility assistance, and case management,
  • Have an ongoing quality assurance program.

Watch the following video to learn more about the history of Community Health Centers and why this bi-partisan-supported effort is helping millions of people receive affordable healthcare.