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Partnership Strategies of Community Health Centers: Building Capacity in Good Times and Bad

July 31, 2017

Policy Brief

Authors: Maria-Elena Young, PhD, MPH, Steven P. Wallace, PhD, Amy Bonilla, Nadereh Pourat, PhD, Michael A. Rodriguez, MD, MPH

Federally Qualified Health Centers — commonly referred to as Community Health Centers (CHCs) — serve as critical safety net providers for those who are uninsured or who may become uninsured. This policy brief reports the findings from the Remaining Uninsured Access to Community Health Centers (REACH) research project, which sought to identify the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on the ability of CHCs to serve the remaining uninsured. Authors examined strategies undertaken by CHCs in four states to reinforce the local safety net through partnerships, improvements to the local health system, and advocacy. With the uncertainties about whether Medicaid expansion will be continued or will be handed over to the states with limited oversight, partnerships both among CHCs and between CHCs and others in the health care system and beyond may become even more important.

The publication is supported by the Commonwealth Fund.

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