Addressing the Opioid Crisis: Innovative Programs Serving People Experiencing Homelessness

Health centers are increasingly seeing individuals who are suffering from Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) and other Substance Use Disorders (SUDs). Many of these individuals are also faced with housing instability or are experiencing homelessness. Innovation is being driven at the ground level by a variety of providers including health centers, public health departments, harm reduction agencies and supportive housing agencies that are all concerned with the impact of OUD and other SUDs on the health of the people they serve. Essential in any innovative care model are the services needed to ensure people experiencing homelessness have access to evidence-based care, including Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT).

This brief will describe the evolution of three unique model programs addressing the needs of this most vulnerable population. All three programs are either a health center in their own right or are essential partnerships created with local health centers to offer evidence-based care. The description will include their successes as well as the barriers to success they are encountering.

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