Who We Are:
The Coalition of Orange County Community Health Centers is a membership organization that represents the interests of the health centers that serve our community’s most vulnerable patients—those who are either uninsured or underinsured—and face disproportionate risks due to structural racism and discrimination. As an organization, we have been engaged in the work of building a healthier Orange County for nearly a decade. We believe that for our community to thrive, everyone must have equitable access to quality, affordable healthcare regardless of income, ethnicity or immigration status. We provide services that help Orange County’s community health centers make that vision a reality and provide the best care possible to their patients. Often referred to as “safety-net” clinics, our members are an essential part of Orange County’s health system. They provide a full range of vital, high-quality healthcare services to over 350,000 patients per year in Orange County, including prevention services, primary and specialty care, mental health and behavioral support, social services, dental and vision.
We ensure our member health centers have a voice at the table when policymakers and leaders from the healthcare community are making decisions that will impact their delivery of care and ability to serve the needs of patients in Orange County. Community Health Centers (CHCs) have been overlooked for too long. Despite the fact that CHCs provide hundreds of millions of dollars in savings to the overall health system, these clinics are consistently shut off from funding opportunities and from taking part in key discussions that impact the system.
The health center landscape is complex and constantly changing. We help our members stay on top of the latest policies and regulations in additional identifying emerging trends and determining how best to respond. With out support, our member health centers have the information and resources they need to translate policy into their daily operations quickly and efficiently. We provide the infrastructure that enables more than 27 independently operating community health centers to operate like one unified health system, which creates efficiencies that ultimately benefit patients and improve community health. We advocate for policies and promote programs to ultimately improve the health and living conditions of people living in Orange County.
We provide the infrastructure and logistical coordination that enables community health centers to respond quickly and effectively to emerging public health issues like COVID-19 and MPox. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, we became one of Orange County’s strongest defenses against the spread of the virus, organizing a mass vaccination system among our member health centers and organizing testing and vaccine pop-up sites in harder-to-reach neighborhoods. From February 3 to March 15, 2021, more than 31,000 shots were administered to residents in medically underserved areas throughout Orange County, in large part thanks to the Coalition’s member health centers.
We provide a wide range of continued education programs to ensure our member have access to the most current health care best practices. Additionally, we provide the “back-end” administrative support required to run a health center so that our members can focus on what they do best: take care of their patients.