241163 LIFE Transitions IN Vulnerable Populations; Merging RESEARCH and Practice for Homeless Veterans SERVICES

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Alexander Libin, PhD , National Rehabilitation Hospital, Washington, DC
The process of transitioning from post-deployment to civilian or non-active duty services is complex, multifactorial, and, at the same time, both highly social and individual. The research aim of a new COMPASShome project at the DC VAMC, is to build a public management capacity incorporating both governmental and non-governmental agencies focusing on developing a framework of policies to address a critical phase during military-to-civilian (MtC) life transition, focusing on a special vulnerable population: homeless Veterans. Our working definition of homelessness builds on accepted VA health codes that identify a Veteran as homeless based on the lack of housing at a single or numerous time points. The main goal of the District of Columbia Collaborative Network for Community Integration in Homeless Veterans (COMPASShome) is to establish new practices and enhance services aimed at homeless Veterans, to promote Veterans' psychological health and foster their reintegration back into the community. COMPASShome addresses homelessness in Veterans using a variety of methods: from an epidemiological study to develop a profile of homeless Veterans to identifying post-deployment periods most sensitive to homeless episodes; from the development of clinical tools for psychological health screening to rehabilitation interventions specific to Veterans who are experiencing homelessness. The COMPASShome conceptual framework builds on a modified Behavior Model for Vulnerable Populations to guide the analytical design of study outcomes. Activities employ findings from various service models for assisting homeless Veterans thus merging research-driven and service-based evidence into a unified framework to guide homeless Veterans research.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Foster a discussion about the cross-cutting evidence-based topics in specialty areas, e.g. acute, in-patient settings, home care, and community as the basis for an integrated model of research, practice and educational programs for care providers involved with homeless Veterans.

Keywords: Homeless Health Care, Veterans' Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: First author
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.