From Crisis to Solutions: Cost Analysis and Interventions for Aging Homeless Adults
Special Projects Fund
February 13, 2017
Homelessness has steadily increased in New York State, with the large majority of the State’s homeless population residing in New York City.
People who experience homelessness often have a complex array of illnesses or other serious disabilities, which leads to high use of hospital-based care and health care costs. As the homeless adult population ages, there will be corresponding increases in health care needs and costs. Studies have found that homeless people age prematurely and have very high rates of geriatric health issues at younger ages compared with people who are not homeless. To mitigate this potential crisis, the University of Pennsylvania School of Policy & Practice (Penn SP2) will conduct multistate, data-driven research and analysis on the health care utilization, needs, and costs of people who are homeless and ages 55 and older. In 2017, NYSHealth awarded a grant to Penn SP2 to support New York State’s participation in this national effort.
Under this grant, Penn SP2 will identify the health care utilization patterns and costs of aging homeless adults and project these costs over the next 10 to 15 years. Data from this analysis will be used to develop potential intervention models that reduce both homelessness and the associated health care costs for the aging homeless population. Penn SP2 will then engage with and disseminate findings to multiple New York State and City stakeholders, as well as key stakeholders in the health care and housing sectors. Penn SP2 will also provide detailed financial projections that will allow policymakers to analyze the financial viability of proposed solutions.