The Health Center Value Study: Bureau of Primary Health Care Program Cost Analyses

Updated picThe Bureau of Primary Health Care (BPHC) at the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) funds health centers across the nation to provide comprehensive primary and preventive care for populations with limited financial and/or geographical access to these services.  The health center program has been the “flagship” direct primary care safety net support program for the federal government since its original incarnation in the 1960’s. Currently, federally funded health centers serve over 20 million people each year, with nearly two-thirds of health center patients from racial and ethnic minority groups and more than three-fourths that are either uninsured or Medicaid beneficiaries.  The expansion of health insurance coverage under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is expected to significantly increase the demand for primary care in health centers.

Our evaluation work aims to identify how to benchmark health center costs and assess the value of the health center program, given the systematic differences in patient population and scope of services between health centers and non-health center settings.  Our evaluation uses multiple datasets, including the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS), the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NAMCS), the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NHAMCS), and Medicaid claims data.

Principal Investigator: Elbert S. Huang, MD, MPH
Research Team:
Marshall H. Chin, MD, MPH
Yue Gao, MPH
Neda Laiteerapong, MD, MS
Sang Mee Lee, PhD
Aviva Nathan, MPH
Robert Nocon, MPH

Funding Sources:
Subcontract by NORC through the Health Resources and Services Administration
Bureau of Primary Health Care