A project by nearby St. Vincent’s Private Hospital, in partnership with Micah Projects Brisbane, Mater Health Services, and funded by the Queensland Government, is helping to make the lives of homeless people easier. Called Pathways Hospital Admission and Discharge Pilot Project, the three-year project works with hospitals and homeless people to plan their discharge from the hospital and provide further healthcare they may need, such as making and keeping doctors’ appointments.
The program has helped to drastically bring down the cost of hospital visits and admissions, especially in the Emergency Department, while ensuring that homeless people are provided the healthcare they need. It also helps the homeless find housing
Only a quarter of the Pathways participants were engaging with community services at the time they started with the program. The figure has since gone up to 98% at the time they leave the program.
Working with Micah Projects Brisbane Homelessness Service, Pathways helps the homeless find housing at the Brisbane Common Ground, a supported housing initiative in West End. Registered nurses from St. Vincent’s Private Hospital provide on-site medical and nursing care.
The program, which started in October 10, 2015 on World Homeless Day, has reported success since its beginnings, and has been able to reduce the number of hospital admissions, emergency room visits, and ambulance call outs.