Lincoln Hospital was founded in 1901 to serve African Americans of Durham County and surrounding areas. With original hospital construction financed by the Duke family, Lincoln served as the primary African American hospital in Durham until 1976, when it closed and transferred its inpatient services to Durham County General Hospital (today Duke Regional Hospital).
Lincoln Community Health Center was founded in 1971 in the basement of Lincoln Hospital by Dr. Charles DeWitt Watts, the first African American board certified surgeon in North Carolina. The Lincoln Community Health Center emerged from Dr. Watts and others’ desire to treat a low income, underserved population in the community where they lived and worked. Dr. Watts died in 2004 at age 86. Today, Lincoln Community Health Center is accredited and certified as a Primary Care Medical Home by The Joint Commission and offers a wide range of services including pediatrics, adolescent health, adult and family medicine, dental and behavioral health.
The Lincoln Community Health Center Foundation, Inc. was incorporated on September 25, 2008 under the leadership of Joyce C. Nichols, PA to serve as the fundraising arm of Lincoln Community Health Center. Ms. Nichols passed away on July 29, 2012. The Foundation continues her legacy, governed by a volunteer Board of Directors and invited Advisory Members. Money raised by the Foundation can only pass to Lincoln Community Health Center.