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Health Engagement Work

Helping people affected by homelessness take care of their mental and physical health

Brighton

Helping people affected by homelessness take care of their mental and physical health

How our support workers help people closest to the streets engage with their health care

We aim to prevent individuals from slipping into rough sleeping or worsening health by helping them take strides towards a healthier, safer, and more secure lifestyle.

When people are placed in temporary accommodation or emergency housing, the lack of security and control they experience can trigger anxiety, depression, trauma and low self-esteem.

These issues make engaging with their health care more challenging, and can impact their chances of transitioning into a home they can sustain independently.

Our health engagement team facilitate better access to professional treatment for mental and physical issues. They support people to meet their necessary health needs andreduce the likelihood of hospital readmission. This could involve:

  • Accompanying people from hospital to their accommodation
  • Making sure they can access their prescriptions and health appointments
  • Attending a weekly clinical supervision to get an overview of the client’s medical issues
  • Connecting them to mental health services
  • Advocating for their health needs
  • Helping people understand and progress their housing options

I don’t know what I would have done without the support from Justlife. I have been suicidal and attempted it but I haven’t done this since having the support from Justlife

– UTA resident

Why our health engagement work matters

Being homeless takes a heavy toll on people’s mental and physical health, and serious health issues can cause homelessness. The living conditions for those rough sleeping, and even those "housed" in temporary accommodation / emergency housing can exacerbate pre-existing health conditions, and trigger the development of new ones.

As their mental and physical health deteriorates, their anxiety, social exclusion, and risk of premature death escalates. Some turn to drug and alcohol use as a coping mechanism, which only compounds their health problems, and complicates their ability to build a life away from homelessness.

Our frontline health engagement workers operate alongside local healthcare organisations in Brighton to strengthen our client’s chances of moving away from homelessness by improving their access to health care services, supporting them in maintaining their physical and mental wellbeing, and helping them engage with their housing options.

Our impact

76

Mental Health

76 clients / professionals identified an improvement in physical or mental health, and 25 identified an improvement in their substance misuse.

616

Health appointments

physical / mental health appointments were arranged or attended by a health engagement worker.

33%

Hospital visits

In Brighton, we've provided health engagement work to over 700 people, resulting in a 33% reduction in unplanned hospital admissions and a 47% reduction in hospital readmission rates.

63

Motivation

63 of our Brighton clients reported an improvement in their motivation to take responsibility for themselves going forward.

Our impact

1000

health appointments

Over 1000 physical / mental health appointments were arranged or attended by a health engagement worker last year.

33%

reduction in hospital visits

In Brighton, we've provided health engagement work to over 700 people, resulting in a 33% reduction in unplanned hospital admissions and a 47% reduction in hospital readmission rates.