Health Centers are community-based and patient-driven
organizations that serve populations with limited
access to health care. These include low income
populations, the uninsured, those with limited English
Some Health Centers also receive specific funding
to focus on certain special populations:
- migrant and seasonal farmworkers
- individuals and families experiencing homelessness
- those living in public housing
- Native Hawaiians
In 2007 Health Centers served over 770,000 migrant
and seasonal Farmworkers and their families, nearly
743,000 individuals experiencing homelessness and
over 133,000 residents of public housing.
Migrant Health Centers
In 2007, HRSA-funded health centers
served more than 770,000 migrant or seasonal farmworkers
and their families. It is estimated that HRSA-funded
health center programs serve more than one quarter
of all migrant and seasonal farmworkers in the United
The Migrant Health Center program provides support
to health centers to deliver comprehensive, high quality,
culturally-competent preventive and primary health
services to migrant and seasonal farmworkers and their
families with a particular focus on the occupational
health and safety needs of this population. Principal
employment for both migrant and seasonal farmworkers
must be in agriculture.
Advisory Council on Migrant Health regularly advises,
consults with, and makes recommendations to the Secretary
of Health and Human Services and the HRSA Administrator
on migrant health issues.
Health Care for the Homeless Program
Homelessness continues to be a pervasive
problem throughout the U.S., affecting rural as well
as urban and suburban communities.
According to a recent national survey, it is estimated
that 744,000 people are homeless on a given night
and 2 to 3 million are homeless over the course of
The Health Care for the Homeless Program
is a major source of care for homeless persons in
the United States, serving patients that live on the
street, in shelters, or in transitional housing. In
2007, HRSA-funded health centers served nearly 743,000
persons experiencing homelessness.
Health Care for the Homeless grantees
recognize the complex needs of homeless persons and
strive to provide a coordinated, comprehensive approach
to health care including substance abuse and mental
Public Housing Primary Care Health Centers
The Public Housing Primary Care Program
provides residents of public housing with increased
access to comprehensive primary health care services
through the direct provision of health promotion,
disease prevention, and primary health care services.
Services are provided on the premises of public housing
developments or at other locations immediately accessible
to residents. In 2007, HRSA-funded health centers
served over 133,000 residents of public housing.
The Native Hawaiian Health Care Program, funded within
the health center appropriation, improves the health
status of Native Hawaiians by making health education,
health promotion, and disease prevention services
available through the support of Native Hawaiian Health
Native Hawaiians face cultural, financial, social,
and geographic barriers that prevent them from utilizing
existing health services. In addition, health services
are often unavailable in the community.
The Native Hawaiian Health Care Systems use a combination
of outreach, referral, and linkage mechanisms to provide
or arrange services. Services provided include nutrition
programs, screening and control of hypertension and
diabetes, immunizations, and basic primary care services.
In 2006, Native Hawaiian Systems provided medical
and enabling encounters to more than 6,163 people.
The Native Hawaiian Health Care Program also supports
a health professions scholarship program for Native
Hawaiians and administrative costs for Papa Ola Lokahi,
an organization that coordinates and assists health
care programs provided to Native Hawaiians.
In FY 2006, 11 Native Hawaiian scholarships were
awarded. More than 170 Native Hawaiian scholarships
have been awarded since the beginning of the program.