Community Health Programs (CHP) is proud to mark National Health Center Week, Aug. 4-10, by highlighting the vital impact of 1,400 community health centers in our nation’s healthcare system and our community.
National Health Center Week is part of a national campaign to increase awareness of how health centers provide accessible, affordable health care in communities. A host of NHCW events celebrating the ways that health centers are “Rooted in Communities” are happening across the country, including health fairs, visits by Members of Congress and state officials to local health centers, press conferences, back-to-school drives, community breakfasts, patient appreciation events, free health screenings and much more.
CHP is part of this nationwide network of locally-run health centers that serve more than 28 million people nationwide. Health centers are on the front lines of national public health challenges. They are a lifeline in remote and underserved communities where the nearest hospital can be as far as 50 miles or more away. Thankfully, in our community, our patients are served by two excellent hospitals.
Nationally, health centers make a big impact, including:
- Reducing unnecessary hospitalizations and unnecessary visits to the emergency room;
- Treating patients for a fraction of the average cost of one emergency room visit;
- Serving more than one in six Medicaid beneficiaries for less than two percent of the national Medicaid budget;
- Lowering the cost of children’s primary care by approximately 35 percent;
- Treating 65,000 patients with medication-assisted therapy for opioid use disorder in 2017;
- Serving over 355,000 veterans throughout the country.
Health centers are not just healers. We are innovators. We look beyond medical charts to address factors that can cause poor health: poverty, homelessness, substance use, mental illness, lack of nutrition and unemployment. National Health Center Week 2019 highlights this growing emphasis on environmental and social factors’ impact on health. To achieve better health for all and tackle these challenges, we collaborate and partner with hospitals, local and state governments, social, health and business organizations.
CHP’s 230 employees serve 32,000 patients in the Berkshire region with primary medical and dental care, nutrition, women’s healthcare, physical therapy and behavioral health services. We, along with health centers around the nation, are making a difference.
To learn more about National Health Center Week, please visit www.healthcenterweek.org.