175133 Changes in the lives of formerly homeless individuals in supportive housing S/A

Tuesday, October 28, 2008: 1:10 PM

Jennifer Cameron King , Joint Medical Program, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
Honora Considine-Cortelyou , Housing and Urban Health, San Francisco Department of Public Health, San Francisco, CA
Colette Auerswald, MD, MS , Division of Adolescent Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
Joshua Bamberger, MD, MPH , Housing and Urban Health, San Francisco Department of Public Health, San Francisco, CA
A significant portion of homeless individuals suffer from mental illness, substance abuse disorders, or both, but are without access to health care or social support. Supportive housing has been proposed as a solution to address the housing and health needs of the homeless, as well as to reduce the public cost burden of high levels of hospital and emergency department use. Since 1999, Direct Access to Housing (DAH) in San Francisco has housed over 1000 chronically homeless people living with mental illness, substance use disorders and chronic medical problems. Quantitative analyses have struggled to demonstrate the impact of supportive housing on both the residents' lives and the health care system. This study will use qualitative methods to further explore the impact of supportive housing on concepts of community, identity and social relationships for recently housed formerly homeless adults in San Francisco. Participant observation and semi-structured interviews of staff and residents will be conducted over a period of 6-8 months to address this question. A grounded theory approach will be used for data analysis. By discussing the role of supportive housing with residents, a deeper understanding of the positive and negative aspects of housing, as well as suggestions for improvement will be identified.

Learning Objectives:
Define supportive housing. Discuss the impact of supportive housing on residents' lives and the health care system. Discuss the benefits of using qualitative methods to assess supportive housing.

Keywords: Homelessness, Housing

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am currently a graduate and medical student pursuing research with no financial interest or benefit from working with the DAH program and HUH clinic.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.