Date of Award

Fall 12-5-2017

Degree Type



Biological Sciences

Director of Thesis

Carla Aguado Swygert

First Reader

Myriam Torres


This thesis aims to compare two types of healthcare organizations that compose the safety-net healthcare system in the United States with the utilization of both personal experiences and extensive research. The first are community health centers, which receive federal funding in order to serve specific populations with in their communities. In my experience, this population was migrant farmworkers, all who came to the United States legally with H2A visas. The second model is that of the free medical clinic, which operates on a volunteer/staff model, but receives no government funding. Serving primarily uninsured patients, free clinics such as the Good Samaritan Clinic, may often work to provide healthcare services to America’s undocumented immigrant population. My personal experiences heightened my understanding of safety-net healthcare facilities in the US and the significant role they play in the lives of many underserved populations. Despite my experiences both being with widely Spanish-speaking populations, the ways in which they operate are unique. Thus, this creates new opportunities and further challenges in their work to address their respective populations’ healthcare needs.

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© 2017, Grant Douglas Tore