Where do you send an acute care patient who is ready to be discharged from the hospital but is experiencing homelessness and needs follow up care? Without a stable address the patient cannot receive home health services. Living in a vehicle or on the street will not give them the time and rest they need to fully recuperate, much less to address chronic health care needs. It is this gap in health care delivery that spawned Providence’s Supportive Housing and Recuperative Care model, or SHARC.
SHARC is an innovative health and housing model developed by Providence and designed to provide hospitals with a discharge resource for patients who are experiencing homelessness and need short-term respite or longer-term recuperative care to achieve stability. The recuperative care units are co-located within a permanent supportive housing program and are leased by the hospital, giving the hospital direct access to this discharge resource. Recuperative care is not a licensed medical facility. Instead, it offers a temporary place for participants to receive home health care and wrap around social services with a goal of achieving stability.
Once settled into their private or semi-private room in the recuperative care program, participants are connected to a primary care provider who can deliver ongoing care and issue orders to home health providers as needed. An on-site service provider assesses non-medical social services needs and begins working with participants on an individualized plan to address those needs. Services might include connection to benefit programs, mental or behavioral health care, chemical dependency treatment, meal programs, legal services, transportation and other support. Over the course of a short respite stay (up to 10 days) or a longer recuperative care stay (up to 6 months), an interdisciplinary group of health and social service providers work together to deliver person-centered care that is developmental, low-barrier and trauma-informed, taking into consideration the whole person and their long-term housing, support and care needs.
One goal of recuperative care is to prepare participants to transition into permanent supportive housing. The health and social service providers working with recuperative care participants will continue to provide services as they transition into the supportive housing program and beyond. This continuation of services helps minimize disruption as the person progresses from one program to the other, helping to ensure they can maintain the relationships and support needed to achieve housing stability.
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