HAN member M Health Fairview writes in The prescription for healthy communities: Investing in housing about the vital role safe and affordable housing plays in creating healthy communities. However, the need far surpasses the supply. The health system calls on the state of Minnesota to address this fundamental human need by scaling up investments.
From the article:
Right now, our under-funded housing systems create just a few hundred new homes each year that are affordable, but we actually need a few thousand new homes each year to meet the housing needs of families with very low incomes. Our housing systems are foundational to health outcomes, and our delivery of health care is compromised when our patients do not have stable, decent, affordable housing. The prescription for what ails our housing system is greater investment that will create more vibrant and healthy communities across Minnesota-and have a positive impact where health really happens.
See also: M Health Fairview’s Coming Home program addresses one of the root causes that impact health and wellbeing, homelessness. The program involves a network of community partners that help participants to find stable housing. In addition, case managers work with participants to obtain regular care from a primary care physician, take necessary medication, and get treatment as needed.
Program impacts: 87% decrease in the number of emergency room visits and 88% decrease in the number of inpatient hospital visits after enrollment.