Improve residents’ physical and/or behavioral health, including through promoting healthy living and delivering health services

2022 NACo Achievement Award Winner

San Bernardino County, Calif., CA

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About the Program

Category: Health (Best in Category)

Year: 2022

In January 2021, California was experiencing an exponential surge in COVID-19 cases. Hospitals and clinical staff were depleted and on the verge of collapse due to staffing shortages and intensive care units filled beyond capacity. Hospitals added surge Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds in addition to their non-surge beds so that staff could care for critically ill patients. San Bernardino County considered all solutions to help with preserving resources. In an effort to prevent unnecessary isolation of persistent COVID-19 positive patients admitted to hospitals and free ICU beds more rapidly, the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health (SBCDPH) developed the Bridge Program. This technology-driven initiative increased digital access to the records of COVID-19 positive patients for the purposes of care coordination. The program allowed hospitals to view the COVID-19 status of both symptomatic and asymptomatic patients upon intake, which assisted with calculating the shortest isolation time and freeing up beds for new critically ill COVID-19 positive patients.

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