First Choice Then and Now

Dear Friends, For as long as First Choice Community Healthcare has been providing primary care, our Health Centers have been passionate proponents of healthy communities. As a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization, First Choice employs over 450 New Mexicans at our nine delivery sites that are strategically located throughout central New Mexico. Our Health Centers deliver high quality, cost effective, accessible care while serving as critical economic engines helping to power local economies. In the early 1970s, we started our first clinics in empty church buildings and storefronts. We got the word out through community outreach workers that we serve everyone, regardless of income or whether they had insurance. The word of mouth spread far and wide across Central New Mexico. In 2018, we provided a healthcare home to more than 53,000 individuals and their families.

Now, 47 years later, we find ourselves going back to our roots more than ever. While our Health Centers are now state-of-the-art facilities, our approach has remained the same. We listen to our Community-Based Board of Directors and our patients and respond with innovative solutions to increase access and meet community needs in a fiscally sound way. In the past seven years, we have more than doubled our capacity to serve. In 2013, we adopted an electronic health record system which improves quality and reduces duplication. We are in the process of refining a team-based approach to care that emphasizes the patient as the center of everything we do. We recommitted ourselves to wellness, prevention, health education and empowering our patients to prevent or manage chronic conditions. This is just the beginning of our quest to practice wellness rather than simply practice medicine.

Our community outreach is expanding beyond the world-class medical, dental and integrated behavioral healthcare we provide to address those social determinants that directly influence community health and wellness. We have been building the capacity to address the social determinants that we have all known are critical to healthy communities. We remain firmly committed to our mission of improving the health, life skills and well-being of all members of the communities we serve. Sincerely,

Paul Luna, President
First Choice Community Healthcare Board of Directors