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11th Street Family Health Services: History

The 11th Street Family Health Services Center of Drexel University dates back to 1996, when the College of Nursing at MCP/Hahnemann University entered into an agreement with the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA) to address health issues of residents in Philadelphia’s 11th  Street Corridor.  The 11th Street Corridor in Philadelphia encompasses several public housing tracts, and has historically been underserved with regard to affordable, accessible and quality health care services. 

The first services from the 11th Street Health Center focused on health promotion and disease prevention.  The Center’s Community Advisory Board, comprised of neighborhood residents, later arranged for use of a temporary space for primary care health services at the Harrison Plaza Community Center.  In 1998, a $3.3 million grant was secured from the federal Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), in partnership with the PHA, to build a freestanding 17,000 square foot state-of-the-art health center.  This site, within the PHA’s new Richard Allen Homes, is centrally located and accessible to four of the public housing developments in the 11th Street corridor.  The new building opened in September, 2002. 

The Center entered into a “linkage” agreement with the Family Practice and Counseling Network in June 2002, which gave the center access to cost based reimbursement and grant funds for the uninsured through their Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) status.  

          In recent years, the 11th Street Health Center has successfully established its Healthy Living Center programs.  The programs reduce risk factors for disease and help patients better manage existing conditions.  Diabetes education, self-efficacy programs, nutrition education, fitness, cooking classes, and behavioral health group support are the core program elements of the Healthy Living Center.

The Center also provides a venue for the education of nurses and other health professionals in culturally competent, community-based care.