General information

Allied Health Career Bridge Program
Community Hospital of San Bernardino’s program for encouraging staff to pursue further education in allied health and promoting allied health careers to youth

Background

Community Hospital of San Bernardino serves a population of nearly 600,000, of which 61% are Latino. According to the (Inland Empire) Quarterly Economic Report, California’s Inland Empire has the 2nd worst economy in the nation. 35% of area Latinos live below the poverty level. The largest demographic served by Community Hospital of San Bernardino is economically disenfranchised.

The Inland Empire has a projected annual vacancy of over 1,000 allied health professionals. Economic development and educational opportunities that are culturally sensitive are critical to the health (both physical and economic) of the region. In 2008, Community Hospital of San Bernardino underwent a Strength-Based Assessment of Cultural and Linguistic Services that identified the need to partner with community-based organizations and clearly identify hospital trainings, events, and activities that address cultural and linguistic aspects of patient and staff needs.

Community Hospital of San Bernardino addresses both cultural and economic needs in three ways:

  1. Providing professional development and career advancement opportunities in the allied health professions for hospital staff through a focused tuition reimbursement program.
  2. Expanding the allied health care pipeline through a partnership with San Bernardino City Unified School District. A course is provided for high school students who are enrolled in schools with either Health Academy or STEM (Science, Technology, Education and Math) programs in place. 
  3. Providing continuing education opportunities for area allied health professionals to increase community capacity and develop cultural awareness and competency. Courses provide CEUs and are taught on the Community Hospital of San Bernardino campus. Course topics include Spanish Language for Healthcare Professionals.

Methods

  • A video library of allied health professions was created through a partnership with Jobing.com. These videos served the purpose of internal marketing, including increasing awareness of Community Hospital of San Bernardino’s tuition reimbursement program, and introducing high school students to the opportunities available in allied health careers. These videos were distributed internally and to educational partners, in addition to being posted on the Community Hospital of San Bernardino website and YouTube.
  • High school students were given tours of the hospital and educational sessions highlighting allied health careers. Community Hospital of San Bernardino held a Healthcare Careers Expo that students attended. At the Expo, students were exposed to simulations of daily duties of an allied health professional and learned about the educational requirements needed for a career in allied health.
  • A course was developed in conjunction with San Bernardino Valley College to offer Spanish Language for Healthcare Professionals. The course was well-received and the College is considering adopting this course model as part of its regular course offerings.

Key partners

  • Community Hospital of San Bernardino.
    • Marion Moore, RN, Manager of Workforce Development, presented a class to high school students about allied health professional careers.
    • Carrie Schmidt, Manager for Volunteer Services
  • San Bernardino Valley College, offered Spanish Language for Healthcare Professionals course.
    701 S. Mt. Vernon,
    San Bernardino, CA 92410
    • Lydia Barajas-Zapata, Instructor and Dean of the Modern Language Department, 909-384-8237, lzapata@valleycollege.edu
  • Jobing.com, assisted in the filming and production of allied health careers videos.

Outcomes

  • A video library highlighting allied health careers was created. A library of 10 videos highlighting careers ranging from Biomedical Technician to Radiology Technologist was created, along with two videos highlighting Community Hospital of San Bernardino’s tuition reimbursement program and the Cyracom Language Line available for patient translation services. These videos have been distributed to educational partners and posted on the Community Hospital of San Bernardino website and YouTube.
  • More employees took part in further education in allied health. Through internal marketing of allied health opportunities and Community Hospital of San Bernardino’s tuition reimbursement program, Community Hospital of San Bernardino saw a 10% increase in the number of employees enrolled in an allied health professional training program.
  • More students became aware of opportunities in allied health professions. Students were engaged in a number of ways, from classes and tours to a Healthcare Careers Expo. These students learned about many different career opportunities available in allied health and about the educational requirements needed to pursue these careers.
  • A Spanish Language for Healthcare Professionals course was created. Upon completion of this course, participants stated they were much more confident communicating with Spanish-speaking patients and were better able to fulfill patients’ healthcare needs. With the incredibly diverse population that Community Hospital of San Bernardino serves, this is a very valuable asset. The course was so well-received that it may become part of the San Bernardino Valley College’s regular curriculum, giving more healthcare professionals the opportunity for training to treat patients in a linguistically competent manner.

Unexpected Challenges

Community Hospital of San Bernardino experienced difficulty in the filming of videos. Videos took longer than anticipated to film and organizational changes at Jobing.com also presented a barrier.
There was also difficulty in implementing the Spanish Language for Healthcare Professionals Course, due to a lengthy contract negotiation and review process. This caused a delay in beginning the course, but upon commencement there was high interest in the course and it was well-reviewed by students. Scheduling also presented a problem for health professionals to attend the courses.

Videos

For all videos on allied health professions, visit the CHSB website.

www.chsb.org

  

Commands