Our History: Building on
West Side Community Health Services (WSCHS) began in 1969
when a group of people on St. Paul's West Side established
People's Health Center in the basement of St. Michael's
Church to provide free bilingual health care for
Spanish-speaking residents. Volunteers served six or seven
patients each day. See our timeline by clicking here.
WSCHS has flourished since then. It incorporated and
opened its first clinic in 1972, moved to a new, larger
location in 1983, and soon doubled the size of the facility.
It expanded its services as well, adding dental services in
1978, healthcare for the homeless in 1987, and two public
housing clinics in 1993.
In 2000, WSCHS achieved accreditation by the Joint
Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations.
Responding to the growing needs in the community, it began
an effort to expand its sites and services to serve the
growing number of patients seeking services.
In 2003, WSCHS merged with Health Start, a nationally
recognized pioneer in school-based clinics. In 2005, WSCHS
took over the East Side Family Clinic from Regions Hospital in began providing comprehensive
family medical services for St. Paul’s East Side
community. In 2012, we joined 9 other Twin Cities' Federally Qualified Health Centers to form the nation's first FQHC led Medicaid focused Accountable Care Organization - the collaborative is affectionately referred as FUHN.
In 2013, a new 34,000 square foot East Side Family Clinic was completed with additional medical exam rooms, 20 state of the are dental operatories, an on-site pharamacy and behavior health services. Currently, WSCHS has 300 employees and over 60%
are bilingual and bicultural.
Our volunteer Board of Directors represents
the communities we serve and over 50% are patients at our
Over the past 44 years, West Side Community Health Services has become an expert in
increasing access to health care and related services
through the systematic breakdown of barriers related to
trust, cost, location, culture and language.