George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Mission

To improve the health status of underserved, uninsured vulnerable populations, and to engage nursing and allied health students in direct provision of health care services through service learning.

About the Bridge Care Model

Bridge care is a new and innovative approach to improve access to healthcare for low income, underserved, and uninsured patients. Bridge care provides temporary health management services to patients who are awaiting placement in a permanent existing medical home. Bridge care is short-term, high-quality, low-cost care that addresses urgent health care needs of the uninsured population during the transition time between initial acute point of entry into the health system until the patient is placed into an already existing community health system and/or medical home. This gap in care is well documented and often leads to inappropriate use of more costly health services including the emergency department. Bridging this gap in health services provides unique opportunities for interprofessional health and human services education. Focusing on health education and preventative care practices during this interval period can reduce risk and high-risk behaviors related to ongoing illnesses and chronic disease and help build healthy lifestyle practices.

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The university provides a bridge to community care from the patient entering into the community health care system towards seeking a permanent medical solution. The patient undergoes brief assessment, education, support, referral, and followup. Faculty act as providers, instructors, and administrators. Students participate at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels. An interdisciplinary curriculum includes clinical student experience (GIFT Model). Direct resources include space, time, collaborators, referrals. Indirect resources include connectivity. The population served by the bridge model are the uninsured and underinsured.

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