"The future of American health care is tilting toward more primary care and preventive care. The need for health center services is projected at 32 million patients by 2020, according to the National Association of Community Health Centers and the Health Resources and Services Administration. As a result, health centers, including federally qualified health centers (FQHC), are poised to continue growing to meet the need for these new health care services in medically underserved communities," write Pam Porter, OFN Executive Vice President, Strategic Consulting, and Annie Donovan, Director of the CDFI Fund, who co-authored an article in the latest issue of Community Developments Investments.

From January thorugh July of 2014 OFN offered six, free two-day training workshops to provide CDFIs with a comprehensive overview of the Community Health Center (CHCs) landscape and how CDFIs can provide financial services to CHCs. The CDFI Fund initiatied this capacity building initiative. More than 200 individuals and 60 CDFIs participated in this intensive training.

"Opportunity Finance Network partnered with experienced and innovative practitioners in the health center financing field. Together, they brought the latest information on financing for health center facility rehabilitation and growth. While few CDFIs have historically lent to health centers, those that have can point to impressive track records in this sector. Capital Impact Partners, Primary Care Development Corporation, and Capital Link together demonstrate decades of CDFI experience, thousands of health center transactions, and billions of dollars of financing. These organizations know the business models of health centers, how to evaluate management capability, and the indicators to assess and manage risk in lending to health centers. While the past is no guarantee of the future, experienced lenders report the history of troubled loan ratios to be less than 1 percent."

Training materials from this capacity building effort are available on the CDFI Fund website, Financing Community Health Centers Resource Bank.

Read the full article here.


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