Our History

Our History

CHN has been committed to providing access to quality healthcare services for low-income and uninsured New Yorkers for more than 30 years.

Our story begins in the late 1960’s, when a group of storefront clinics in NYC began dedicating themselves to offering family planning services. In 1981, to strengthen management and administration of these twelve community-based health care centers, the Community Family Planning Council was established.

The clinics soon expanded to include primary care, mental health and social services. In 1998 the name was changed to Community Healthcare Network to better reflect our comprehensive array of services.

Since its inception, the agency has grown tremendously in response to such social crises as unequal distribution of medical care, adolescent pregnancy, AIDS, inner city poverty and homelessness. Here is a glance at our history:


1981: Founded as the Community Family Planning Council

1986: Became first provider in NYS to offer prenatal care to shelters on the mobile health clinic

1987: Offered HIV counseling and testing

1991: First family planning agency in US to offer comprehensive HIV primary care to HIV infected women

1994: Granted Article 31 license in Brooklyn

1996: Began transitioning to full primary care including adult medicine, adolescent care, pediatrics and well-baby care

1998: Helen B. Atkinson Health Center became first 330 New Start health center

1998: Name changed to Community Healthcare Network

2000: Transition to comprehensive primary care complete at all centers

2001: Opened first dental clinic at HBA

2004: Became one of the first in nation to adopt HIV rapid test

2006: All centers designated Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC)

2007: Assumed management of the Downtown Health Center, now the Catherine M. Abate Health Center

2008: Adopted Electronic Health Records

2009: Assumed management of the Long Island City Health Center

2010: Received NCQA Recognition for Level 3, Patient-Centered Medical Home

2011: Assumed ownership of the Tremont Health Center and the Family Health Center

2014: Opened the new Community League Health Center

2015: Opened school based health center at the Seward Park Campus

2015: Inaugurated the Nurse Practitioner Fellowship Program