With the generous support from the New York State Health Foundation, CSH recently wrapped up a 7-part statewide training series on housing and health integration. As NYS seeks to redesign its Medicaid program and how health care services are being delivered, both providers and policy-makers alike are realizing the critical role supportive housing plays in stabilizing individuals with very complicated health needs. The Housing as Health Care – New York’s Boundary –Crossing Experiment article published last December in the New England Journal of Medicine affirmed this inextricable link between housing and health outcomes and housing as a key social determinant of health.
Last Fall, CSH was awarded a special projects grant from the Foundation to improve integrated service delivery between NYS Medicaid Health Homes and supportive housing providers by promoting coordination and reducing duplication of services offered to NY’s most vulnerable homeless and unstably housed individuals enrolled in Health Homes. Health Homes are an optional state plan benefit under the Affordable Care Act of 2010 to coordinate care for Medicaid members with very complex medical, behavioral, social and long-term care needs who are frequent users of health and other public systems. New York is leading the nation in its very aggressive Medicaid overhaul and Health Homes are a fundamental part of this transformation.
CSH’s “Understanding Housing and Health Home Integration” provided education and resources to help build the capacity of Health Homes and their network of providers to effectively serve homeless and unstably housed clients who are high utilizers of crisis care. These regional trainings were a joint partnership between CSH and the New York State Department of Health (DOH), Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS), Office of Mental Health (OMH), Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) and the AIDS Institute. Training participants included lead Health Home agencies, care coordinators and other downstream providers including housing providers.
In total, CSH provided trainings to close to 400 participants with representation from all 62 counties in NYS. These trainings were the first round of a two-part training curricula as part of the grant. CSH plans to convene follow-up training opportunities in the late summer/ early fall.