About & History

About and History Photo

The Knox Community Health Center (KCHC) is located in Galesburg, IL and serves all of Knox County and the surrounding areas.

KCHC provides Medical, Dental and Behavioral Health services and works with the vision "a community without barriers to healthcare". KCHC is open to people of all ages, regardless of their ability to pay and charge for services on a Sliding Fee Scale.

As a community health center, KCHC is community based and patient directed. It is designed to provide affordable, accessible, high-quality primary health care services to individuals and families, including people who are unhoused, agricultural workers, residents of public housing and veterans.

Before KCHC became federally funded, it started as a free clinic with limited services providing medical and dental care. Recognizing the fact that Knox County needed expanded health care for the underserved population, the Knox County Health Department (KCHD) and the Board of Health began the process of securing federal funding in 2009. 

In 2009, KCHD and it's Board of Directors applied for, and was awarded the Health Resources and Administration (HRSA) Planning Grant for Community Health Center Planning with Partners. This grant allowed KCHD to hire a consultant for the application process. KCHD also was awarded the Federal Small Healthcare Provider QI Grant which was used to make updates in what is currently the health center.

In 2010, KCHD created its first Governance Board, a requirement for becoming a Community Health Center. Later that year, the 330 New Access Point application was submitted.

The Governance Board completed the Non-Profit Governance Certificate Program in 2011.

On June 12, 2012 the KCHD received word it had been awarded Section 330 Federally Qualified Health Center Funding. Dr. Tommy West was hired as KCHC's first Chief Medical Officer later that year.

KCHC added Marketplace Outreach and Enrollment Services in 2014 and began providing Mental Health counseling services in 2015. In 2017, the KCHC Governance Board approved a Sliding Fee Scale for the 340b Prescription Drug Program. The Sliding Fee Scale is reviewed yearly to ensure a fee schedule that is affordable for all patients.

The global pandemic forced a temporary closure of the Knox Community Health Center on March 18, 2020. The Behavioral Health department rose to the challenge and began offering Telehealth to avoid any disruption of services. KCHC reopened its doors to the public on May 29, 2020.

KCHC received HRSA American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) capital funding in 2021 to support infrastructure growth.

In Fall of 2022, the Knox Community Health Center began a construction project centered around American Disabilities Act (ADA) updates designed to improve the quality and accessibility of treatment for its patients. Changes included a newly remodeled entrance into KCHC, ADA dental chair and room, a new blood draw lab, ADA accessible bathrooms and wider door frames for easier access to examine rooms.