Complex health service needs for people who are homeless

Moore, Gaye, Manias, Elizabeth and Gerdtz, Marie Frances 2011, Complex health service needs for people who are homeless, Australian health review, vol. 35, no. 4, pp. 480-485, doi: 10.1071/AH10967.

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Title Complex health service needs for people who are homeless
Author(s) Moore, Gaye
Manias, ElizabethORCID iD for Manias, Elizabeth
Gerdtz, Marie Frances
Journal name Australian health review
Volume number 35
Issue number 4
Start page 480
End page 485
Total pages 6
Publisher CSIRO
Place of publication Clayton, Vic.
Publication date 2011-11-09
ISSN 0156-5788
Keyword(s) emergency care
healthcare service use
service providers
Health Services
Health Services Needs and Demand
Homeless Persons
Interviews as Topic
Middle Aged
New South Wales
Summary BACKGROUND: Homeless people face many challenges in accessing and utilising health services to obtain psychosocial supports offered in hospital and community settings. The complex nature of health issues is compounded by lack of accessibility to services and lack of appropriate and safe housing.

OBJECTIVE: To examine the perceptions and experiences of homeless people in relation to their health service needs as well as those of service providers involved with their care.

DESIGN: A purposive sampling approach was undertaken with a thematic framework analysis of semi-structured interviews.

PARTICIPANTS: Interviews were undertaken with 20 homeless people who accessed the emergency department in an acute hospital in Melbourne, Australia and 27 service providers involved in hospital and community care.

RESULTS: Six key themes were identified from interviews: complexity of care needs, respect for homeless people and co-workers, engagement as a key strategy in continued care, lack of after-hour services, lack of appropriate accommodation and complexity of services.

CONCLUSIONS: Findings revealed the complex and diverse nature of health concerns in homeless people. The demand on hospital services continues to increase and unless government policies take into consideration the psychosocial demands of the communities most vulnerable people efforts to divert hospital demand will continue to fail.
Language eng
DOI 10.1071/AH10967
Field of Research 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
1117 Public Health And Health Services
1605 Policy And Administration
1110 Nursing
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2011, AHHA
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
Centre for Quality and Patient Safety Research
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