Homelessness in Health Care
Homelessness is the priority of the community health nursing problem I identified
in Ironridge. This post is focusing on how supported housing related to preventable ED
visit. As poor health can contribute to becoming homelessness, being homeless can lead
to poor health. At the same time, homelessness face barriers to primary care
notwithstanding having greater needs for health care, on average, than people who are not
homeless. Access to health care is complex and can be a factor in meeting an individual's
health care needs, the ability to perceive such needs, the desire for care, the person's
health care–seeking behavior, the capacity to reach health care, and obtain the appropriate
service. Chronic diseases, including hypertension, diabetes, chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease, seizures, and musculoskeletal disorders, are often undiagnosed or
inadequately treated in homeless adults. Undiagnosed and untreated chronic illnesses in
homelessness related to the massive use of the emergency room (ER) and an increase of
preventable hospitalization. In the research study by Ku et al. (2014), found 23.7% of ER
visits made by homeless frequent users who expended $4.8 million in ER in one year. ED
visits are costly. However, some visits are potentially avoidable. The study of Enard and
Ganelin (2013) found that poor health care management and inadequate access to care
augmented the preventable ED visits. ED visits for conditions that are preventable or
treatable with appropriate primary care lower health system efficiency and raise costs
(Enard & Ganelin, 2013).
The research question: Does increase usage of supported housing program (I) in
chronic illness homelessness (P) will decrease preventable emergency department visit
(O) compared to without the supported housing program?
P: Population: chronic illness homelessness
I: Intervention: supported housing program
C: Comparison: without supported housing program.
O: Outcome: decrease preventable emergency department visit
T: Time: six months to one year.