, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp 156-170

Neighborhood health centers

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The first neighborhood health center was funded in 1965 by the Office of Economic Opportunity. Now, 12 years later, 127 federally funded centers are serving over a million people. The centers have offered a high quality of service, delivered comprehensive care that includes preventive services and health supervision, developed a workable team approach in such care, and shown that this can be done at reasonable cost.

Evaluative studies made on center effectiveness in disease prevention, in reduction of hospitalization and emergency room usage, and in improving the quality of care show that the centers compare favorably with other methods of providing similar care. Problems of financing are discussed, as well as possible directions for the future.

Mr. Seacat is Assistant Professor of Community and Preventive Medicine, New York Medical College, Fifth Avenue at 106th Street, New York, New York 10029. This investigation was supported in part by grant RR-05398 from the General Research Support Branch, Division of Research Resources, National Institute of Health.