The Lincoln Heights Health Center, the first Community Health Center in Ohio, opened in 1967 with six volunteers and a $10,000 grant from the City of Lincoln Heights to provide care to medically underserved City residents. At that time, Lincoln Heights was the largest self-governed African American city in the nation; however, there were no physicians or dentists practicing there. The Lincoln Heights Health Center opened in a four-room apartment on a shoestring budget, where physicians, nurses and dentists worked solely on a volunteer basis.

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In 1972 the health center doubled its size by moving to a newly constructed Community Facilities building. With funding from the Office of Economic Opportunity (O.E.O.) through the Ambulatory Patient Care Network and the Ohio Department of Health, the Center became a comprehensive, accessible and affordable provider of health care to area residents. The Lincoln Heights Health Center remodeled and expanded in 1975 and 1985, and constructed a state-of-the-art facility in 2004.

To meet the growing need for health care services for the underserved in surrounding communities, health centers were opened in two additional neighborhoods: Mt. Healthy in 1987 and Forest Park in 1999. In 1996, the organization changed its corporate name to the Lincoln Heights HealthCare Connection. The corporate name was modified to The HealthCare Connection (THCC) in 2005.

With support from The Health Foundation of Greater Cincinnati, in 2007 THCC opened four co-located behavioral health centers in conjunction with Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health Services, Central Cincinnati Health Board, and Talbert House. Also with support from The Health Foundation of Greater Cincinnati, in 2012 THCC initiated planning for the Viking School Based Health Center with Princeton School district, which opened in 2013.

In 2014, Lincoln Heights Health Center and Mt. Healthy Family Practice achieved NCQA Level 3 PCMH recognition, the highest patient-centered medical home standard for care.

THCC Timeline

  • 1967 – Founded the Lincoln Heights Health Center, first community health center in Ohio
  • 1972 – Lincoln Heights Health Center doubled in size and moved into the Lincoln Heights Community Facilities building
  • 1974 – Launched the first funded Women Infants Children (WIC) program in Hamilton County
  • 1987 – Opened the first neighborhood expansion site at Mt. Healthy Family Practice Center
  • 1990 – Partnered with University of Cincinnati Medical Center to expand services in northern Hamilton County while educating health professionals in community health.
  • 1994 – Operated Henry A. Long Health Center and Joseph Health Center in Hamilton, Ohio, through 1999, funded in part by Fort Hamilton Hughes and Mercy Hamilton Hospitals
  • 1995 – Honored as one of five health centers nationally “Models That Work” by the United States Department of Health and Human Services
  • 1999 – Opened the second neighborhood expansion site at Kemper Heights School in Forest Park
  • 2002 – Began construction on 42,000 sq. ft. health center and administrative offices in Lincoln Heights
  • 2002 – The Ohio Association of Community Health Centers gives THCC the Landmark Recognition Award for its pioneering work in community health
  • 2004 – State of the art facility, housing medical, dental, and social services in Lincoln Heights, opened to the public
  • 2005 – Changed corporate name to The HealthCare Connection to better reflect mission and affiliations within — surrounding communities
  • 2007 – Opened four co-located behavioral health centers in conjunction with Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health — Services, Central Cincinnati Health Board, and Talbert House
  • 2011 – Dental Center honored by the DentaQuest Institute and the National Network for Oral Health Access as a “Center of Excellence” for leadership in oral health practice management and improving the oral health of our patients
  • 2011 – Lincoln Heights Health Center and Mt. Healthy Family Practice achieved NCQA Level 2 PCMH recognition as two of the premier patient-centered health homes in Ohio
  • 2012 – Initiated planning for the Viking School Based Health Center with Princeton School district.
  • 2013 – Opened Viking School Based Health Center in partnership with the Princeton City School District
  • 2014 – Lincoln Heights Health Center and Mt. Healthy Family Practice achieved NCQA Level 3 PCMH recognition as two of the premier patient-centered health homes in Ohio
  • 2015 – Grew our partnership with Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health (GCB) and began operating in our fifth behavioral health co-location in Amelia, Ohio.