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Special populations funding is a term that HRSA uses to distinguish whether Community Health Centers (CHCs) receive additional specialized funding to serve a specific population. Those funding definitions are as follows:
For CHCs that receive additional funding to serve these populations, it’s important to remember that there are specific HRSA Program Requirements that must be taken into consideration. Ensuring that there is representation on the Board of Directors is a requirement. The Health Center Compliance Manual (Chapter 20 – Board Composition) outlines the requirements for health centers that receive the additional special populations funding. Representatives from each of the special populations for health centers must be represented on the board of directors if they receive the additional funding. For example, if a CHC receives Public Housing and Homeless Funding, then the Board of Directors must have a representative from both the Public Housing and Homeless community.
A representative could be either a patient that is homeless, MSAW or a resident of Public Housing, or an advocate (have the expertise about, or work closely with, the special population). Regardless of the type of representative, it’s imperative that that individual ensures that the special population group has a “voice” on matters related to the responsibilities of the board of directors. As an example, if a health center adjusts their hours of operations, the health center should take into consideration how the changes of hours would affect that particular population served. Documentation of the discussion should be included in the board meeting minutes. For more information on these requirements, please visit: https://bphc.hrsa.gov/programrequirements/compliancemanual/chapter-20.html#titletop