New Facility to Serve Medically Fragile Homeless Discharged from Local Hospitals
June 2, 2010
A new facility opens this month where homeless adults can go when they leave a hospital and still need medical care — the first of its kind to open in Contra Costa County.
The grand opening of Contra Costa Health Services' Philip Dorn Respite Center is from 3 to 5 p.m. Thursday, June 10. Speakers include State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier and local health officials. The center is located at 2047D Arnold Industrial Way in Concord.
The 24-bed facility is a transitional safety net for homeless people who cannot get medical stabilization services at an emergency shelter, said Cynthia Belon, Director of the Contra Costa Health Services Homeless Program. It will also include an on-site health clinic.
"Recovering at home is not possible if a person does not have a home," Belon said. "We're offering a temporary home where people can recover, connect with services, find housing and become self-reliant."
The center is a joint effort of the Homeless Program and Health Care for the Homeless. It receives support from Contra Costa Regional Medical Center, Doctors Medical Center, John Muir Health, Kaiser Permanente and Sutter Delta Medical Center.
Contra Costa is modeling its center after a similar one in Santa Clara County, which saved more than 350 bed days in one year for its hospitals.
Each person who comes through the center will be enrolled in benefits and health coverage. They will also receive case management, medical and psychiatric care, access to substance abuse detoxification and treatment services, meals and help finding permanent housing.
Belon said the facility could serve as many as 380 adults per year. She estimates 4,000 people go without a home every night in Contra Costa.
"Without this center, many of these individuals would not fully recover and end up back in the hospital, where costs are much higher," Belon said. "The Philip Dorn Respite Center is a place where people can recuperate and avoid repeat trips to an emergency room or another hospital stay."
To find out more about homeless services in Contra Costa, visit www.cchealth.org/services/homeless/.
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