Category: Health and Health Care

1 - Receipt of Preventive Services by Older Adult Patients Accessing Primary Care at HRSA Funded Health Centers

Purpose of study

To describe the sociodemographic characteristics of older adult patients served at HRSA-funded health centers (HCs) and examine their receipt of preventive care.


The analytic sample population was comprised of older adult patients ages 65 years or older (n=522), who responded to the 2014 Health Center Patient Survey sponsored by the Health Resources and Services Administration.   We conducted bivariate analysis to examine receipt of preventive services among older patients served at health centers. All analysis was performed with SAS, version 9.3. 


Among older adult patients served at HCs, the majority (76%) were between the ages of 65-74 years.  Nearly 15% of those between ages of 65-74 years were currently employed as compared to 4.5% of patients 75 years or older.  There were no statistically significant findings on the receipt of preventive services between the two age groups.  Compared with national statistics, older HC adult patients had higher percentages of receiving flu and pneumococcal as well as breast and colorectal cancer screening.  However, older HC adult patients had a lower percentage of receiving a dental examination.    


The US older adult population (ages 65 or older) is projected to reach 23.5% (98 million) by 2060.[i] Given the geographic living environment constricts with advanced ages and most HCs are nested in living communities, HCs are well positioned to provide primary care for an aging U.S. population that prefers to age in their homes. Our findings showed many instances where HC older adult patient’s receipt of preventive services studied was comparable or better than that of the general US older adult population. As older adults effectively access preventive and primary care at HCs, the potential to compress morbidity in older ages and profound opportunity to support population-level healthy aging will enable older adults to live in their community longer and reducing long-term care costs.

[i] Colby SL, Ortman JM. Projections of the Size and Composition of the U.S. Population: 2014 to 2060, Current Population Reports, P25-1143, U.S. Census Bureau, Washington, DC, 2014.


Sue Lin

Division Director
Health Resources and Services Administration

Sue Lin is currently the Quality Division Director in the Office of Quality Improvement within the Bureau of Primary Health Care (BPHC) of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The Quality Division leads BPHC initiatives in the areas of patient centered medical home transformation, ambulatory care accreditation, and primary care integration with behavioral health, oral health, and public health. Prior to joining HRSA, Sue directed a national cooperative agreement funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities to advance national public health and disabilities programs through research, technical assistance, education, and service. In addition, Sue has also served in state agencies of West Virginia and Massachusetts as the Rehabilitation Engineer, where she provided assistive technology services to individuals with disabilities across the life span.

Alek Sripipatana

Division Director
Health Resources and Services Administration
Rockville, Maryland

Dr. Alek Sripipatana is Division Director for Data and Evaluation at the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Bureau of Primary Health Care in the Office of Quality Improvement. Alek’s division oversees the data collection, data evaluation, and data dissemination on all HRSA-supported health centers across the country, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and the U.S. Affiliated Pacific Islands. In addition to his position at HRSA, Dr. Sripipatana serves as the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Health Advisor and Liaison for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.