UF Health nurse dedicates years to provide free healthcare in a bus
A UF Health nurse has dedicated years of service to provide healthcare to those in need.
Just inside a bus, The UF Mobile Outreach Clinic serves dozens of patients a day, with no cost to them.
“I received the Spirit of Gainesville Award for Medicine and it’s a wonderful honor, very humbling,” said Ginny Bruzzese, the Mobile Clinic nurse director.
Bruzzese said regardless of the small, cramped conditions she works in, patients express how much they love coming to the clinic.
“They feel more comfortable here than going to a larger medical facility,” Bruzzese said. “They express to us that they feel like family, that they enjoy the care and even if they had insurance, they’d rather stay here than go anywhere else for their medical care.”
“I’m comfortable, I’m very comfortable,” said Gregory Branch, a patient at the clinic. “I’m satisfied because it’s an easy access place to get to from where I live at too…and I haven’t had any problems with them.”
Branch says he tries to be a resource to his community and lets others around him know about the resources this mobile clinic can provide.
“I recommend this to a lot of people because it opens them up to a lot of medical stuff they can have and then they can go other places if this place can’t help them,” Branch said.
The mobile clinic also serves to give UF Health students professional experience. With Bruzzese’s 42 years of nursing experience, she serves as a mentor to the bus. Bruzzese said this free healthcare opens students up to many different types of medical experiences.
“We are picking people up that didn’t know they had diabetes, or hypertension, or even cancer,” Bruzzese said. “So we’re able to give them some care here on the bus as well as get them connected with physicians at the university.”
Even though Bruzzese said she is humbled by her recognition, she is happy this brings extra attention to the mobile clinic.
“I would love that everyone in our community know about the mobile clinic and not have to suffer without having the medical care available to them,” Bruzzese said.