Reducing the use of emergency department services by creating supportive housing projects.

The goal of this initiative is to reduce the use of emergency department services, inpatient hospitalization, and corrections resources among high utilizers, by creating supportive housing projects that are jointly funded by hospitals, housing providers, and other key stakeholders.

Five percent of patients account for roughly 50 percent of healthcare costs. Many so-called “high utilizers” have complex medical conditions compounded by mental illness and substance use disorders (SUD); some are homeless or unstably housed. For this population, affordable housing co-located with supportive services has been shown to improve health outcomes, reduce the use of high-cost emergency room and hospital services, and improve corrections outcomes, with attendant cost savings.

In this initiative, MHCF is investing in community-based planning grants that identify a specific population to be served, and draft a viable plan for financing, developing, and operating a supportive housing project. MHCF will also work with consultants to identify cost-neutral opportunities to use Medicaid dollars for supportive housing.

Recipients of grant funds will present strong plans to:

  • Develop a coalition (generally housing agencies, hospitals, and corrections officials, with other partners as appropriate) that agrees to collaborate to develop a supportive housing plan.
  • Identify a specific population of high-utilizing patients to be served by the project.
  • Develop specific metrics to measure current utilization patterns and costs.
  • Develop data sharing agreements to facilitate collaboration.
  • Create a supportive housing plan that includes design, financing, and operations to meet the needs of the target population.

If you are interested in applying for funding under this initiative, please contact MHCF Chief Operating Officer Ted Madden

Implementation of Value-Based Care

Focus Area: Partnerships for Better Health

Our Work in Housing and Health Care

Housing and Health Care Grantees

City of Missoula: Office of Housing and Community Development

Missoula Supportive Housing Collaborative

Project Term: 12 months; 2018-2019
Grant Amount: $60,000

For this project, the Missoula Supportive Housing Collaborative with the guidance of the Corporation for Supportive Housing will develop a plan that uses data integration and hospital analysis along with community resources and program coordination to drive investments in supportive housing. Supportive housing will be designed to serve the population that is most likely to be homeless or near homeless, and who face health obstacles including mental illness and substance use disorders. The project’s goal is to give community service providers guidance in identifying cost-effective ways to improve outcomes for vulnerable people by providing supportive services and secure housing.

Saint James Healthcare Foundation

Butte Supportive Housing Collaborative

Project Term: 12 months; 2018-2019
Grant Amount: $60,000

For this project, Saint James Healthcare, in partnership with Action, Inc. and with the guidance of the Corporation for Supportive Housing, will develop a plan that uses data integration and hospital analysis along with community resources and program coordination to drive investments in supportive housing. Supportive housing will be designed to serve the population that is most likely to be homeless or near homeless, and who face health obstacles including mental illness and substance use disorders. The project’s goal is to give community service providers guidance in identifying cost-effective ways to improve outcomes for vulnerable people by providing supportive services and secure housing.

Neighborworks Great Falls

A Housing and Health Care Plan for Cascade County

Grant Term: 12 months; 2018-2019
Grant Amount: $60,000

For this project, Neighborworks Great Falls, in partnership with Benefits Health Systems and with the guidance of the Corporation for Supportive Housing, will develop a plan that uses data integration and hospital analysis along with community resources and program coordination to drive investments in supportive housing. Supportive housing will be designed to serve the population that is most likely to be homeless or near homeless, and who face health obstacles including mental illness and substance use disorders. The project’s goal is to give community service providers guidance in identifying cost-effective ways to improve outcomes for vulnerable people by providing supportive services and secure housing.

Poverello Center

Medical Respite Shelter for Homeless Patients

Project Term: 24 months; Ended 2018
Grant Amount: $50,000

For this project, the Poverello Center partnered with St. Patrick’s Hospital to establish care coordination for homeless individuals recovering from a hospital stay to help them transition from the homeless shelter to transitional housing. The project expanded on Poverello’s existing medical respite program by supporting more robust care coordination, evaluating health outcomes, and strengthening and formalizing partnerships and funding agreements. In partnership with the VA, the Poverello Center successfully converted five of their beds to house veterans. In addition, the project was successful in reducing emergency department readmissions and inpatient stays among the homeless population participated in the program. Care coordination and transitional shelter services will be sustained moving forward through ongoing support from the VA and St. Patrick’s Hospital.

NeighborWorks Great Falls

Home Matters: Linking Homes and Health Outcomes

Project Term: 18 months; Ended 2017
Grant Amount: $10,000

NeighborWorks Great Falls completed two surveys of health outcomes, one of the residents of new apartments and the other of homeowners in newer homes. The surveys indicated better self-reported health outcomes after residents moved to the new home or apartments. Focus groups were conducted with discharge planning professionals, and they indicated that housing is considered in discharge planning and that supportive housing is needed. This study and community engagement was the impetus for the grantee to engage in a MHCF Housing and Healthcare Initiative planning grant.

Housing and Health Care Resources

2018 Call for Proposals

Find out about this year’s available grants.