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"Their [the BTG students'] involvement helps us with our summer programming and we not only appreciate and benefit from this, but we have come to depend on it."
BTG Community Preceptor
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BTG Model

Bridging the Gaps links the education of students in the health and social service professions with the provision of health-related service in economically insecure communities. Participation in the BTG program requires academic health institutions to accomplish the following:

  1. Identify local, economically insecure communities (that would welcome the additional health-related service students can offer) with whom they hope to collaborate and build service-linked partnerships;

  2. Provide continuity of contact between the students and faculty at the academic health institution and the identified communities and their organizations and agencies;

  3. Develop and integrate the necessary didactic and skill-building components to help students better engage with and provide healthcare in economically insecure communities;

  4. Ensure that supervision is provided by both academic and community preceptors;

  5. Regularly evaluate the program by eliciting and incorporating input from participating community and agency personnel, students and faculty;

  6. Inform the larger community of the progress of the program through a public forum and an annual report.

Academic health centers involved with Bridging the Gaps house the program within their medical schools and offer collaboration with the health professions disciplines unique to their institutions. In any exceptions to this arrangement, medical school collaboration is required for the established educational model.

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"BTG allowed me to experience health care from a different perspective, that of the patient. I witnessed the frustration of managing chronic illness on a daily basis, appreciated the courage needed to make meaningful changes for one's health, and the difficulty in making these choices without adequate support or resources "
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