With higher levels of exposure to the elements (sleeping rough on the streets or spending prolonged periods of time in extreme outdoor temperatures), those experiencing homelessness are at greater risk of chronic health problems. Furthermore, approximately 20% are severely mentally ill, while 17% are faced with a chronic substance abuse challenge.13 Some health organizations exist to specifically serve the unique needs of this population, such as Boston’s Healthcare for the Homeless program. In other cities, an emerging model emphasizes bringing healthcare to those experiencing homelessness where they are, using mobile medical units or traveling doctors and nurses. Even if you are not a healthcare professional, you can equip yourself with knowledge of common healthcare conditions of those experiencing homelessness (and subsequent warning signs), as well as knowledge of healthcare assistance resources to direct them to.
Prevention Point Needle Exchange
Nurses Come to the Homeless through Street Medicine Program
New York, New York
Street Medicine New Orleans
New Orleans, LA
Healthcare for the Homeless in Boston