HUD HOPWA Policy Brief: Understanding the Impact and Potential for Health Centers

Health centers are increasingly addressing the social determinants of health for their patient population through partnerships and linkages to local housing and service resources to improve health outcomes for patients. Many resources exist through partner federal, state and mainstream infrastructures that should be part of a health center’s “toolbox”. With the passage of the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act in 2016; i updating the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)’s Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) program, health centers are well positioned to add another “tool” that provides resources for housing and supports focused on individuals with HIV and AIDS. HOPWA offers an opportunity for health centers to serve as key partners in linking eligible individuals to housing and services.

HUD recognizes that homelessness and housing instability are linked to poor health outcomes for people living with HIV/AIDS. These individuals are more likely to delay or drop out of care and are often unable to obtain and maintain medication regiments compared to people that are stably housed. Housing stability is one of the strongest predictors for accessing and maintaining HIV care and is an effective HIV health intervention

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