Established in the late 1990s as a joint effort of the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC), several state-based Primary Care Associations (PCAs), the Community Health Center Capital Fund and the Bureau of Primary Health Care1, Capital Link grew out of the community health center family and continues to support it through creative advisory services.
In addition to providing direct technical assistance to health centers, Capital Link works with funding groups and partners to develop financing and technical assistance resources to help health centers expand to meet the primary and preventive health care needs of their low-income, uninsured and disadvantaged communities.
In order to assist FQHCs in closing their capital funding gaps, Capital Link works with lenders, foundations, CDFIs and other sources of capital to leverage additional low-cost capital. Over nearly 15 years, Capital Link has developed the following innovative approaches to capital development:
- Tax-Exempt Bond Program for health centers in Massachusetts
- Gulf Opportunity Zone New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Program for health centers in Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi
- Use of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Loan Guarantee within an NMTC financing structure
- Use of a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) direct loan with a New Markets Tax Credit transaction
- The largest database of audited financial information for health centers nationally; used for financial benchmarking and educational purposes
- Education of numerous lenders and foundations regarding the merits of health center investments
- Timely estimates of national capital needs of health centers
- Accurate estimates of capital needs for hard hit areas such as the Gulf Opportunity Zone and to determine the scope of funding needs of health centers nationally
1BPHC, a division within the federal Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), provided the initial grant and contract funding to establish Capital Link. Since that time Capital Link has continued to work with HRSA receiving support to provide a number of initial stage and foundational capital-related technical assistance to health centers nationally.