Why Do Community Health Centers Deserve Celebration?

We’re celebrating National Health Center Week in Colorado along with other Community Health Centers (CHCs) in other states this week. (See the events across Colorado here.)

But why are CHCs worth celebrating? Here are a few facts about Colorado’s CHCs:

  • Colorado CHCs continue to serve more patients each year. From 2010 to 2011, they experienced a 3.5 percent increase in patient load, and have seen a 58.8 percent increase in patients over the last ten years (2002-2011).
  • CHCs can save taxpayer money. One study shows that CHCs save the health care system $1,262 per patient.[i] Colorado CHCs provide comprehensive primary health care for less than $2.00 per patient per day.
  • CHCs care for one-third of all low-income uninsured in Colorado, one-third of all Medicaid enrollees, and one-quarter of all CHP+ enrollees.
  • Colorado CHCs employ more than 3,500 people in high-need communities across the state.

[i] Shi, L et all (2004).  “America’s Health Centers, Reducing Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Prenatal and Birth Outcomes” Health Services Research, 30(6), Part I, 1881-1901

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