Special Projects Fund

Grantee Name

William F. Ryan Community Health Center, Inc.

Funding Area

Special Projects Fund

Publication Date

September 2014

Grant Amount


Grant Date:

December 2009 – June 2011


In 2009, Columbia University announced its intent to close the Thelma C. Davidson Adair Community Health Center (Thelma Adair), located in the medically underserved community of Central Harlem.

Allowing Thelma Adair to close would have created a significant gap in health care capacity—current patients would lose their medical home and unmet community health needs would only have increased in this medically underserved area. The William F. Ryan Community Health Center (Ryan) is part of the Ryan Network—a group of Manhattan-based community health centers that was founded to provide community health care in the most underserved neighborhoods of New York City. Ryan was in a unique position to take over Thelma Adair. The center was located in Ryan’s catchment area, and Ryan had a strong reputation for managing community-based health centers.

In December 2009, NYHealth awarded a grant to Ryan to help ensure the smooth transition of Thelma Adair into its operations.

Outcomes and Lessons Learned

  • Assumed management and operations of the Thelma Adair site, which became known as the Ryan/Adair Community Health Center;
  • Hired a full-time, board-certified family practitioner to serve as the on-site supervising physician;
  • Hired additional staff members, including a full-time dentist and dental assistant; a part-time physician; two full-time data entry clerks and one part-time data clerk; and two full-time licensed practical nurses;
  • Increased its volume of medical services by 30% for a total of 7,498 visits; and
  • Increased its volume of dental visits by 9% for a total of 1,992 dental visits.