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[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Health status, health care utilization, and barriers to care in two populations of street youth in San Francisco

Jennifer R. Hecht, BA1, Mirriam Rafiq, MPH2, Eddie Cruz, BA2, Jen Carlson, MD2, David Lein, MS3, Ron-Dia Crawford2, Serenity Enriquez2, and Colette Auerswald, MD4. (1) 2442 Acton Street, University of California at Berkeley, School of Public Health, 2442 Acton Street, Berkeley, CA 94702, 401-595-4819, jrh@berkeley.edu, (2) Division of Adolescent Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Francisco, Box 0503, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94143, (3) Division of Biostatistics, University of California at Berkeley, School of Public Health, 140 Earl Warren Hall # 7360, Berkeley, CA 94720-7360, (4) Peds - Adolescent Med, UCSF, UCSF Box 0503, San Francisco, CA 94110

Background: Homeless youth have low health care utilization rates and multiple barriers to care. We sought to describe and compare the health status, health service utilization, and barriers to care of homeless youth in two demographically and culturally distinct neighborhoods. Methods: Data were collected as part of a Brief Street Interview using venue-based sampling, a method used to locate hard-to-reach populations by recruiting them at sites where they congregate. Eligibility criteria included being 15-24 y.o., unstably-housed, and in the chosen venue during data collection. Dependent variables included: health status (excellent, good, fair, poor); service utilization within previous 30 days (shelter, clinic, etc.); and specific barriers to health care (big problem, little problem, no problem). Results: 64 youth were recruited on Market Street (61% African-American, 33% Caucasian, 6% “Other”) and Haight Street (2% African-American, 76% Caucasian, 22% “Other”). Market youth were more likely to report good/excellent health compared to Haight youth (86% vs. 58%, p=.05) and were less likely than Haight youth to have accessed services within 30 days (50% vs. 67%). Market youth were more likely to report lack of insurance (78% vs. 36%, p=.01), lack of money (56% vs. 33%, p>.05), and transportation (39% vs. 24%, p>.05) as barriers to care while Haight youth were more likely to report: “doctor will tell me how to lead my life” (22% vs. 6%, p>.05). Conclusion: These data indicate that services should be targeted specifically to sub-populations of street youth based on their particular barriers to care and health needs.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Homelessness, Barriers to Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Access to and Utilization of Health and Human Services Among the Homeless

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA