Pathway works to bridge the gap between primary and secondary care for homeless people. Our specialist team in a hospital will normally be led by a local specialist homelessness GP, physically making connections between the hospital and community practice. The Health E1 Practice in Brick Lane worked with us on a needs assessment of healthcare for homeless people at the Royal London Hospital. We published the Royal London needs assessment in summer 2011. Dr Peter Buchman from Health E1 has been our Pathway homeless GP at the Royal London since autumn 2011.
Other primary care practices providing Pathway doctors include Bradford health care, York Street in Leeds, Urban Village Practice in Manchester, and the Meadowell Homeless Practice in Watford. For our work in South London we are collaborating with the specialist ‘Three Boroughs’ nurse-led community team, and the Brighton Pathway team has close links with the Morley Street Homeless Practice.
We are keen to hear from other specialist homelessness practices interested in exploring how the Pathway model can help improve relationships between primary and secondary care for homeless patients with complex needs.
If you are interested in primary care for homeless people, or more generally in commissioning health services for homeless people you will want to read the ‘Standards for Commissioners and Service Providers‘ we have recently published on behalf of the Faculty for Homeless Health. The document includes basic standards for all services working with homeless people and specific standards for primary care.
In partnership with the Faculty for Homeless Health we are developing clinical governance and accreditation services for specialist homelessness primary care providers. This will be based on the Faculty’s standards and include both peer and service user reviews.
Pathway and the Faculty are also working on new models for fully integrated health services for homeless people from street to primary care, including secondary care options, intermediate care and links to the many other health and social care services that work with our client group.
If you would like to discuss getting a local service accredited to the Standards please get in touch by clicking on the ‘contact us‘ link above.