Getting Capital Funding for your Community Health Center

The Need for Capital Funding
The increasing population and provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have resulted in the construction of additional community health centers (CHCs) around the country, with more expected to come. One of the greatest needs of CHCs is capital funding for new construction projects and equipment. A 2014 report from the Health Resources and Services Administration, Bureau of Primary Health Care (HRSA/BPHC), forecasts capital project plans worth an estimated $5.1 billion, including $541 million for equipment costs, over the five-year span of 2014 through 2018. Obtaining funding for these new construction projects and associated equipment generally falls to the management and administration of a CHC, who may not know where to begin. Here are some ideas to consider:

Finding Capital Funding Options
Money for capital funding of a community health center derives from various public and private sources, including:

  • State and federal level grants and loan guarantee programs
  • Charitable organizations, particularly local philanthropic sources
  • Registered nonprofits or local community development financial institutions (CDFIs) such as credit unions, local banks or investment brokers
  • Foundations and trust funds
  • Donor organizations

Obtaining Funding for a CHC
In all cases, seeking funding entails identifying suitable opportunities and preparing a proposal according to the funder’s unique criteria. These steps will help you map out the journey to successful capital funding:

Step #1: Define the Need
Funding options are often available for very specific aspects of your community health center requirements. For example, you might seek funding from a philanthropic organization for equipment to provide therapies for disabled children, while an investment broker may have the mandate to fund screening facilities for diabetics.

Step #2: Look for Funding Sources
A number of grants are program-based, so look for resources available specifically for capital funding. Investigate the USDA, various Rural Health Information websites and explore local financial institutions.

Step #3: Create a Funding Proposal
Most funding institutions have criteria for proposal submission available with the application forms. These typically include a detailed business case, feasibility studies, comprehensive budget and expert analysis of the specific need for the service in the geographical area. Gathering these materials takes time and may require initial funding to pay for the process. Check that the time frame in which to compile and submit the proposal is feasible and that you have funds available for gathering the information.

Step #4: Submission of the Proposal
Funding organizations receive multiple proposals for every option, and most have a stringent screening and approval process. Check to ensure you are cognizant of inclusions and exclusions that can sink your proposal right off, and follow the proposal instructions to the letter. Find out whether a personal presentation is a possibility, as this could be your opportunity to make a compelling case to the decision makers. After submitting your proposal, follow up regularly in case more information is needed.

When looking for equipment and supplies to support your CHC construction project, look to Concordance Healthcare Solutions for quality cost saving options. We specialize in Delivering service beyond your expectations.

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