Community Health Centers

DescriptionCommunity Health Centers provide comprehensive primary care to patients without regard to their ability to pay. By definition, they must serve a specific underserved area or population, provide care on a sliding-fee schedule, offer comprehensive services, and have a community-based board of directors. They are required to provide comprehensive primary care services—but that will vary from center to center depending on the community’s needs.
Patient Population
CHCs serve all patients regardless of their ability to pay
Typical Lead
CHCs are formally recognized and certified by HRSA as a federally qualified health center (FQHC) or as a look-alike.
Role of Home Health
CHC may contract with home health agencies to provide services to beneficiaries in the home. Home health agencies may become community health centers if they provide core primary care services and otherwise meet HRSAs requirements.   
Reimbursement Model 
Federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) who have the formal designation from HRSA are able to receive federally appropriated funds from the federal government. Medicaid and Medicare reimburse FQHCs at a federally designated prospective payment system that takes into account each Centers’ specific bundle of services.