National Health Center Week is observed in the second week of August every year and takes place from August 4 to 10 this year. It is promoted by the National Association of Community Health Centers which seeks to celebrate the accomplishments within their communities. Moreover, they endeavor to spread awareness about the importance of community health centers. They also look to advocate for emergency and long-term funding for community health centers to ensure the smooth provision of services to everyone for years to come.
History of National Health Center Week
The community health center in the United States plays an eminent role in providing primary care and public health services to the low-income and uninsured groups of society. They are also classified as non-profit and clinical care providers operating under federal standards. As part of the country’s health care safety net, the centers use federal grant funding.
A civil rights movement in the 1960s catalyzed the establishment of community health centers in the United States of America. The Office of Economic Opportunity (O.E.O.) set up “neighborhood health centers” to provide health and social services to the medically underserved and disenfranchised populace. Appropriate federal funds were also granted for the clinics and they ensured extensive community involvement for quick responsiveness to community needs. The Columbia Point Health Center funded by the O.E.O. served the poor community living in the Columbia Point Public Housing Projects and on its 25th anniversary in 1990, the center was rededicated as the Geiger-Gibson Community Health Center. This center is still in operation. Health centers across the country now serve millions of patients each year and they also provide solutions to pressing healthcare issues to make sure it is accessible for one and all.
The National Association of Community Health Centers started National Health Center Week to promote their efforts in building a healthy country by servicing the citizens for their health requirements. Each year they honor the work and services carried out by health centers within their communities on designated days during National Health Care Center Week.
National Health Center Week timeline
New York City establishes its first district health center at 206 Madison Avenue.
The system expands by adding four district health centers in Queens.
The Judson Health Center, founded by Eleanor A. Campbell, becomes the largest health center in the U.S.
Columbia Point Health Center in Dorchester, Massachusetts, becomes the first community health center to be set up in the U.S.
National Health Center Week FAQs
What are community health events?
Community health events are designed to bring on-site health care services to local facilities. They provide participants with essential health services and information about their current health.
What is the purpose of health surveillance?
Health surveillance can help to detect ill-health at an early stage to ensure better measures for prevention. They also help in providing data to assist employers in evaluating health risks and coming up with solutions.
What do health centers do?
Health centers overcome several barriers such as geographical, cultural, linguistic, e.tc. to provide primary and preventive health services.
How to Observe National Health Center Week
Get a health check-up
People usually come up with excuses to avoid getting a health check-up done. During National Health Center Week, head to your local health center and get a check-up done to detect any potential illness and take corrective measures if need be.
Spread awareness about health centers
You can tie up with local bodies to spread awareness on health centers. Advocate for their mission, inform others about the importance of health, and how they can get access to affordable healthcare through these centers.
Volunteer at a healthcare center
You can look for volunteering opportunities during the week. They typically have many programs running, and can provide administrative or logistical support to ensure a successful week.
5 Important Facts About Health
The skin works hard
The skin is the body’s largest organ — it regulates temperature, and defends against disease and infection.
The United States’ healthcare expenditure
The U.S. spends almost three times more on healthcare compared to other countries around the globe.
Vitamin D for bone health
Apart from calcium, vitamin D is equally as important to determine bone health.
Kidneys need water
As kidneys filter your blood up to 300 times a day, they need water to function properly.
Brush at the right time
It is said that brushing too soon after drinking or eating leads to the softening of the tooth enamel.
Why National Health Center Week is Important
It goes beyond geographical and economic boundaries
No individual should be in a position to not receive healthcare due to a lack of funds or accessibility. Healthcare centers serve as a beacon of strength in communities. They ensure that comprehensive care is available to all, regardless of income or insurance status.
Health is wealth
Health is of paramount importance and as age increases, health is wealth. With your health in check, you can live life to the fullest. Healthcare centers ensure your greatest asset, which is health, remains in prime condition.
Reduces racial and ethnic health disparities
Owing to the mission and locations of healthcare centers, they provide services to a vast section of society. A significant portion of recipients of these services belongs to racial and ethnic minorities thus alleviating the issue of health disparities in these groups.
National Health Center Week dates