Bridge Assistance 

Bridging the gap of financial uncertainty for our patients in need

Bridge Assistance is the PeaceHealth charity care program that provides medically necessary and some preventive services for our patients at PeaceHealth facilities at a reduced cost or without charge when it has been determined payment for those cannot be obtained through insurance, outside agencies, or private means.

Patients may apply for Bridge Assistance before, during, or after treatment, or at any time during the billing and collection process. Anyone seeking Bridge Assistance may request an application, which must include verification of income to be considered. Consideration occurs once a completed application has been submitted to PeaceHealth in accordance with PeaceHealth’s policy using % Federal Poverty Level. Federal poverty guidelines are available on the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services website.

Bridge Assistance Grid (02/2006)
% Federal Poverty Level
% Bridge Assistance Provided
0 – 200%
201 – 225%
226 – 250%
251 – 300%
301 – 375%
376 – 400%


Bridge Assistance is secondary to all other financial resources available to the patient, including, but not limited to: insurance, third party liability payors, government programs, outside agency programs, and personal resources. Bridge Assistance is not granted to individuals or households that may be eligible for insurance or government programs that have not completed the application process for those benefits. Patients who reside outside PeaceHealth’s service area are not eligible for Bridge Assistance unless the patient requires emergent services while visiting in PeaceHealth’s service area.

Bridge Assistance is granted only for medically necessary evidenced-based care or for urgent or emergent services. Those services on the PeaceHealth’s medical procedure exclusion list will be denied. In addition, elective services that can be safely delayed are not covered by Bridge Assistance and will be denied. Consideration will be given for preventive screening on a case-by-case when not covered by state programs.  All Bridge Assistance patients, even those who receive care from outside providers, will need prior authorization through Columbia United Providers (CUP) for surgeries, high-dollar imaging and procedures before being scheduled.

For complete information about Bridge Assistance, contact Patient Counseling Services.

After contacting our patient counseling services, submit a Bridge Assistance Application and Bridge Assistance Insert Form

Return the forms, related to care and services at all PeaceHealth facilities, to:

PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center
Attention: Patient Financial Services
P.O. Box 1238
Bellingham, WA 98227-1238​​