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What is a Community Health Center?

Community health centers (also known as Federally Qualified Health Centers) play a crucial role in the nation’s health care system, providing affordable health services to nearly 30 million patients in medically underserved communities. They provide a direct response to the growing need for affordable, high-quality health care services.

Community health centers are private, nonprofit, patient-governed, community-directed organizations. They are designed to remove common barriers to care by serving communities whose residents have historically experienced financial, geographic, language, cultural or other barriers to receiving care. Community health centers provide a health care home that integrates high quality medical, dental, behavioral health, pharmacy, and enabling services without regard to a person’s ability to pay. Each Community Health Center takes a tailored approach to meet the unique needs of the people in its surrounding community.

Professional staff providing care at community health centers represent graduates of some of the finest colleges and universities in America. These individuals choose to practice in a community-based system of care to ensure that everyone is afforded an opportunity to enjoy a certain quality of life. Community health center services are delivered from state-of-the-art facilities, in an environment of care that respects the dignity of each individual.

Community Health Centers, such as Carolina Family Health Centers, Inc., provide a sliding fee discount program for low-income families so that financial status does not become a barrier to receiving care. Medicaid, Medicare and many other commercial insurance plans are accepted as payment for services rendered.

Community health centers have grown in popularity across the economic spectrum as a means to obtain high quality, comprehensive care close to home, without regard to cultural, medical or financial status.