About KPCA

The Kentucky Primary Care Association was founded in 1976 as a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation of community health centers, rural health clinics, primary care centers and all other organizations and individuals concerned about access to health care services for the state’s under-served rural and urban populations.

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What is a Community Health Center (CHC)?

Since the nation’s first health centers opened in 1965, expansion of the federally-supported health center system to over 1,400 organizations has created an affordable health care option for more than 28 million people. Health centers help increase access to crucial primary care by reducing barriers such as cost, lack of insurance, distance, and language for their patients. In doing so, health centers provide substantial benefits to the country and its health care system.

Health centers:

  • Provide highly efficient and cost-effective care, generating $24 billion in savings for the health care system annually.
  • Increase access to timely primary care, playing a role in reducing costly, avoidable emergency department (ED) visits and hospital stays. The average cost for a health center medical visit was less than one-sixth the average cost of an ED visit in 2012.
  • Deliver a broad array of primary and preventive care services, including screening, diagnosis and management of chronic illnesses such as diabetes, asthma, heart and lung disease, depression, cancer and HIV/AIDS.
  • Reduce mortality, health disparities and risk of low birth weight with the care they deliver.
  • Offer numerous enabling services such as transportation, translation, case management and health education in order to ensure their patients are receiving the care they need.

What is a Rural Health Clinic (RHC)?

The Rural Health Clinic (RHC) program is intended to increase access to primary care services for patients in rural communities. RHCs can be public, nonprofit, or for-profit healthcare facilities. To receive certification, they must be located in rural, underserved areas. They are required to use a team approach of physicians working with non-physician providers such as nurse practitioners (NP), physician assistants (PA), and certified nurse midwives (CNM) to provide services. The clinic must be staffed at least 50% of the time with a NP, PA, or CNM. RHCs are required to provide outpatient primary care services and basic laboratory services.