246554 Update on Emerging Research on Veteran Homelessness

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 8:30 AM

Roger Casey, PhD , National Center on Homeless Among Veterans, Tampa, FL
John Schinka, PhD , National Center on Homelessness among Veterans, Tampa, FL
Current population estimates suggest that 75,000+ veterans are homeless on any given night and perhaps twice as many experience homelessness over the course of a year. Homeless veterans now receive housing assistance and supportive services in a variety of VA and community programs that provide a broad range of alternatives to facilitate permanent housing solutions. As these programs have evolved, increasing research effort has been directed to evaluation of outcomes. A review of this literature reveals that the outcome paradigms have typically focused on mental health characteristics (e.g., serious mental illness, substance abuse) of veterans and program elements (e.g., transitional housing with mental health treatment support) as factors influencing outcome. More recent research in veteran homelessness has taken a broader view, recognizing the importance of more comprehensive assessment of the veteran receiving services and of the programs providing these services. There is now increasing recognition that the population of homeless veterans is heterogeneous and composed of subgroups with varying pathways of entry into homelessness, differing patterns of long-term outcomes with and without housing interventions, and complex interactions of risk profiles. In this symposium, we introduce current critical topics reflecting the recent research effort that recognizes the complexity of the homelessness condition in veterans. These presentations review the underlying issues and provide representative results of programmatic investigations of the factors related to the dramatically increased risk of suicidal behaviors in homeless veterans, characteristics of the growing older homeless veteran population, and more comprehensive approaches to the prediction of housing intervention outcomes.

Learning Areas:
Other professions or practice related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Identify at least two topic areas that are focal concerns for current research on homeless veterans and homeless housing intervention programs.

Keywords: Homelessness, Veterans' Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Director of one of the largest VA housing intervention programs and train professional staff in provision of homeless services to veterans.
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.