Increasing Access to Health Care
in the Nation's Most Needy Communities
Launched in 2002, the President's
Health Center Initiative aimed to
significantly increase access to primary
health care services.
In just five years, the Initiative's goal has been achieved: new or expanded Health
Center sites in 1,200 communities.
Through this Initiative, investments
in the Health Center Program have
nearly doubled growing from a little more than $1 billion in FY2000 to the nearly $2 billion it is today and Health Centers have experienced an
unprecedented period of sustained
expansion and quality improvement.
Recent data from 2006 points to how
successful this effort has been in
increasing the numbers of people served
and expanding services across the
- Health Centers cared for more than 15 million patients in 2006, an increase of more than 4.7 million over 2001.
- Almost 2.6 million patients received
dental services in 2006, an increase of
more than 80 percent over 1.4
million in 2001.
- Some 470,000 patients received mental health
care in 2006, an increase of almost
170 percent over 176,000
High Poverty Counties
| The President's Health
Center Initiative also sparked the High
Poverty County Presidential Initiative,
which is extending the benefits of health
center care to the hardest-to-penetrate,
poorest areas of the country. The first
grants under this new initiative were
announced in August 2007. Some are grants
to existing grantees to expand satellites
into neighboring poor counties and others
are to entirely new grantees.
- 80 High Poverty Grants plus 25
Planning Grants will establish new
access points in low-income counties.
- Health center sites will exist
in more low-income counties than
- Some 300,000 people in some of
the poorest communities in the country
will gain access to primary health
care, many for the first time.
HHS Marks Expansion of 1200th Health Center, Meeting Key Bush Goal (press release, December 5, 2007)
Meeting the Health Care Needs of Uninsured and Underserved Americans (White House Fact Sheet, December 5, 2007)
Health Care Center for the Homeless,
Inc. is the only health care provider
for people who are chronically homeless
in the streets and woods of Florida's
Orange, Osceola, and Seminole counties.
Martha, a patient who had been homeless
for many years, had trouble finding
a job because she was missing several
Our recent expansion of oral health
services allowed us to treat more
patients and offer more restorative
treatments than ever before.We have
been able to bring a smile back
to Martha's face. With her new confidence,
she has been able to get a job at
a local thrift store.