CommunityHealth is the leader in delivering comprehensive, high-quality, patient-centered health care at no cost to low-income, uninsured individuals (adults only) in need of a medical home.
We accomplish this through three key pillars of success:
- Philanthropy: Fostering broad-based support from individuals, foundations, corporations and institutions.
Learn more about philanthropy at CommunityHealth.
- Volunteerism: Building upon the long-standing commitment of thousands of individuals to our mission.
Learn more about our volunteers.
- Partnerships: Cultivating strategic collaborations – with hospitals, universities, training programs, health care companies and more.
Learn more about our partnerships.
Who we are
Founded in 1993, CommunityHealth is dedicated to serving the uninsured and underserved in Chicago and surrounding communities. In 2012, CommunityHealth provided more than 25,500 medical and dental visits for 10,000+ patients. This level of care is made possible thanks to the time and talent of more than 1,400 volunteers, including 450+ providers (physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, dentists, pharmacists, counselors, etc.) who in 2012 donated more than 58,000 hours of their time.
CommunityHealth’s main facility is located in Chicago’s West Town – 2611 W. Chicago Ave. In 2010, we opened a satellite in Chicago’s south side Englewood neighborhood — a community with great need and limited resources. The Englewood site is housed in the Chicago Department of Health’s Englewood Health Center at 641 W. 63rd Street.
As the largest volunteer-based free medical facility in Illinois, we offer demonstrated success and an innovative model for providing compassionate and comprehensive medical and dental care to the uninsured. With our range of patient services and many institutional affiliations, CommunityHealth is a leader among free clinics nationwide.
What we do
Thanks to committed individuals and partners, we provide a wide range of services on site, including primary, specialty (e.g. cardiology, gynecology, neurology), and dental care, preventive health screenings, vaccinations, select diagnostic testing, and related services.
CommunityHealth operates on an appointment-only basis, and, whenever possible, patients see the same provider at every visit. CommunityHealth provides patients a true medical home, with ongoing, high-quality, compassionate care and the opportunity to build a relationship with their health care providers.
Furthermore, at CommunityHealth, we are committed to treating the “whole” person and are dedicated to finding new approaches to meeting the complex health needs of our patient population. Through an award-winning health education program and a growing social services department, we empower patients to take ownership of their health and well-being.
Our West Town health center is open for patient care 60 hours per week — offering appointments six days and four evenings per week. The Englewood site is open for patient care five days per week; we will add more daytime and evening hours as the program grows. At both sites, all examinations, lab tests, medications, and services are provided at no cost to patients.
Who we serve
In Illinois, 1.91 million people – nearly 15% of the population – have no health insurance. Working families are joining the ranks of the uninsured, as the percentage of Americans who obtain health insurance through their jobs is declining.
CommunityHealth’s patients are these vulnerable men and women who fall through the cracks of our health care system. To be eligible for our services, individuals must have no health insurance of any kind (except Medicare Part A/hospitalization coverage only) and their income cannot exceed 250% of the Federal Poverty Line (FPL) – $55,875 for a family of four. We verify all patients’ income annually.
Most of our patients live at or below 100% of the FPL ($22,050 for a family of four) – 56% in West Town and 74% in Englewood. More than 75% of our patients come from working households that do not qualify for Medicaid and can’t afford to purchase insurance.
A great percentage of CommunityHealth’s patients are minorities – populations that are disproportionately living with chronic illnesses and so are in need of ongoing care. At West Town, 47% of patients are Latino, 41% Caucasian (of whom 22% are Polish immigrants), 6% African American, and 6% other. The Englewood location serves a predominantly African American patient base (85%) with 11% identifying themselves as Latino and 4% Caucasian.
Throughout CommunityHealth’s history – representing nearly two decades of continual growth in services and patients served – one truth has remained constant: The need for essential health services for the uninsured in the Chicago area remains urgent. CommunityHealth is deeply committed to expanding access to high-quality care for those who need it most – and we are truly privileged to serve as their medical home.