Pathway is the UK’s leading homeless healthcare charity. We work with the NHS and other partners to create improved models of care for homeless people.
Our purpose is to improve the health and wellbeing of people experiencing homelessness.
Pathway’s model of a multi-disciplinary team in a hospital uses the opportunity of a hospital admission to enable people experiencing multiple exclusion to move onto a more positive life path.
Founded in 2009, Pathway has worked to improve the quality of healthcare homeless and excluded patients receive by:
- developing and sharing best models of care like our hospital teams;
- increasing specialist skills of workers in healthcare;
- influencing policy; and
- reducing stigma in healthcare against people experiencing multiple exclusion.
Pathway has helped 11 hospitals in the UK to create teams of doctors, nurses, social care professionals and peer supporters. These teams support over 3500 homeless patients every year.
However, many more people need our help. Over the next 5 years, Pathway plans to extend its network of teams and share the Pathway model more widely. The aim is to improve outcomes for homeless patients and help reduce health inequalities.
The NHS Long Term Plan calls for stronger NHS action on health inequalities, and a concerted and systematic approach to addressing unwarranted variation in care. The Plan commits the NHS to continuing to commission, partner with and support charities, social enterprises and community interest companies providing services and support to vulnerable and at-risk groups. In particular it commits to extra funding to meet the needs of rough sleepers and notes that people affected by homelessness die, on average, around 30 years earlier than the general population
Pathway’s vision is for better and more equitable health and wellbeing for all patients.
Inclusion health matters because homelessness is a health issue – wider social determinants impact health, not just on individuals but the whole of society.
We believe an integrated approach like Housing First could end homelessness for good.