A Brief History
The Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center (MVNHC) began serving the community in 1973 to address the urgent need for preventative and affordable healthcare services among the area’s underserved individuals and families. The Center began operating through a Model Cities Grant in the City of Mount Vernon. The City of Mount Vernon contracted with Westchester County Department of Health to operate the new health center. Back then, the Center had a staff of 18 and was quite modest. The Center consisted of several medical units housed in prefabricated modular trailers located on a piece of land donated by the City of Mount Vernon.
In 1980 the Center moved into a newly constructed 50,000 square feet facility constructed with funding received from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The Center became independent from the County of Westchester to become a free-standing Center operated by its own 501(c) 3 Community Board in 1985.
Over the years, MVNHC grew into a Federally Qualified Health Center with eight locations and two mobile health vans, with a full, interdisciplinary, and ethnically diverse staff of over 275. In 1997, MVNHC was accredited by the Joint Commission and was one of the first Community Health Centers to receive accreditation with Commendation by the Joint Commission. The Center now provides a full range of healthcare services at four locations, two Mount Vernon public schools, and two area homeless shelters. The Center has become the healthcare home for thousands of lower Westchester County residents and has long-established relationships with patients and residents which often span generations.
Renaming to Westchester Community Health Center
In its 50th anniversary year, on April 19, 2023, Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center officially changed its name to Westchester Community Health Center to better reflect the broader geographic area we serve. Though our name changed, we remain committed, through our staff, to providing patients with comprehensive, affordable, high-quality care in a respectful, understanding environment.
Who We Serve
Westchester Community Health Center (WCHC) sees over 41,000 unduplicated patients and receives nearly 130,000 patient visits annually. Designated a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC), WCHC serves adults and children living in low-income neighborhoods across southern Westchester County New York, and northern parts of the Bronx.
Our mission is to serve patients regardless of their ability to pay, or their immigration status. Most of our patients are Medicaid-eligible or are working poor and medically underserved. For many of them, WCHC is their medical home and is the only place they can reliably turn to, in order to have their health care needs met fully, expertly, and compassionately.
In addition to serving the general population, we also provide medical and related social support programs that focus on the needs of special populations such as:
Our Patient-Centered, Coordinated Team Approach
We believe that patients receive the best care possible when treatment is provided through a coordinated healthcare team led by the patient’s primary healthcare provider. The primary healthcare provider is responsible for overseeing the care for the whole person, including specialty care and support services. This care team approach fosters trust, respect, and open communication between the patient, which empowers the patient to be an active participant in their care and health. Every patient selects a primary care physician to develop a personalized care plan and oversee their care.
We are a Federally Qualified Health Center with eight sites: WCHC Mount Vernon; WCHC Greenburgh; WCHC Yonkers; WCHC Lake Street; two school-based health centers – WCHC at Edward Williams Elementary School and WCHC at Mount Vernon High School; two homeless-shelter health centers – WCHC at Coachman Family Center and WCHC at Grasslands Homeless Shelter; and a mobile health unit.
Accreditations and accolades
Westchester Community Health Center (WCHC) is a Federally Qualified Health Center. WCHC was one of the first community health centers to receive accreditation with commendation by the Joint Commission as a Primary Care Medical Home. The Center is recognized as a Level III Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). The PCMH is a care delivery model whereby patient treatment is coordinated through the patients’ primary care physician to ensure they receive the necessary care when and where they need it, in a manner they can understand. The Health Center receives Federal Health and Human Services funding and has Federal Public Health Service (PHS) deemed status with respect to certain health or health-related claims, including medical malpractice claims, for itself and its covered individuals.