OPCA’s North Star is our commitment to advancing health equity. This commitment drives our work on the cutting edge of reforming payment and primary care models among health centers nationwide, as well as our approach to public policy.
As a nonprofit membership association founded in 1984, OPCA’s members include all of Oregon’s community health centers, also known as federally qualified health centers (FQHCs), other safety net clinics, and those who support them. Our mission is to lead the transformation of primary care to achieve health equity for all.
OPCA provides technical assistance, training and policy support to health centers. In addition to providing support to help health centers meet core federal and state requirements, OPCA partners with health centers to advance the goals of health system transformation: better health, better care, lower costs and health equity.
Oregon’s community health centers deliver integrated medical, dental and behavioral health services to many of the state’s most vulnerable communities through over 200 locations statewide. Over 400,000 Oregonians receive their care at a community health center, including one in four people on the Oregon Health Plan. Over 73% of our patients live below the poverty line, and 94% live at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level.
Challenges such as poverty and homelessness, cultural and language barriers, rural or social isolation, and chronic mental illness often have a significant impact on our patients’ health. In addition to helping health centers provide high quality integrated medical, dental and behavioral health care, much of our work involves helping providers better understand the circumstances of their patients’ lives and address the social determinants of health as a major driver of health equity. Together with health centers across the state, we work to understand and help address the social determinants of health in the clinic, through community partnerships, and through our involvement in public policy.
To accomplish our shared goals, we support health centers and key partners by facilitating peer network gatherings, trainings, site visits, learning collaboratives, and data-driven improvement projects. In addition, we work with policymakers and partners to share the impact health centers have in their communities and advance policy to improve patients’ lives and the ability of health centers to serve them.