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Healthcare for the Homeless Day August 15 2018

Charles Drew Homeless Services Provide Care!

Charles Drew Health Care INC. (CDHC) has continued to be a leader in offering health care services to those who are in desperate need of it no matter where they are in the city of Omaha.

Many people but especially those who are homeless never think about the implications of not seeing a doctor when necessary so, chronic illnesses like Diabetes, Heart disease and lung, kidney and liver disease are left unchecked and unmanaged. This is where Charles Drew uses its expertise to offer health care to this population and meet then where they are.

CDHC Mission:

Dedicated to providing quality comprehensive health care in a manner that acknowledges the dignity of the individual, the strength of the family, and the supportive network of the community.

Providing regular hours at two clinic locations as well as a mobile unit Charles Drew’s staff can respond to a population that is vastly under-served when it comes to comprehensive health care. They also seem to find their patients when there is no “known address”. That along with several others being one of the most complex issues for the homeless population, being able to find them.

Charles Drew Health Center Homeless services patients at two clinics

Campus of Hope 1490 N 16th Street

Siena Francis House – 1702 Nicholas.

Services, call (402) 345-9860
Clinics hours:Monday through Friday, 8 – 11:45am and 1-5pm.
The Outreach Mobile Van Program operates on Tuesday and Thursday from 1 – 5pm in the east and south east quadrant of Douglas County servicing patients who are chronically Homeless.
Transportation Program currently services four shelters and rehabs in the Douglas County area.
In-house Patient Advocate assists patients with Medicaid and Disability applications and links to programs and services.
Mental Health services Tuesday and Friday, 8-11:45am and 1-5pm.
Women’s Clinic operates every Wednesday morning from 9am – 12:00pm (noon)

The dedicated Charles Drew staff serving the homeless population in Omaha is a natural fit since they know the needs of the patients in the Homeless clinics as well as in the other clinics they serve and are able to communicate in a way that makes sense for the population.

They offer transportation to and from 4 other homeless facilities and rehab locations to the 2 CDHC health care clinics.

Twice a week their mobile unit goes where the clients are, and offer to the best of their ability, valuable screenings and testing, as well as monitoring illness and chronic disease.

The opening of the two Homeless Clinics give homeless people options when it comes to accessing health care. They can make an appointment at one of the clinics and receive examinations and testing as well as referrals to dentistry or on to another clinic that is able to do more comprehensive diagnosis when needed.

Charles Drew Health Center Homeless – National Health Care for the Homeless Council Needs YOU!

Charles Drew needs the community’s support in both spirit and monetary donations in order to support the work already being done and help to expand services when necessary.

To get involved, give a donation, or to get more information please go to Charles Drew Homeless where you can also find CDHC Homeless staff contact information, too.

The National Health Care for the Homeless Council

Quality. Access. Justice. Community.
The Council is a National membership organization that connects one with peers, specialists, and resources to eliminate homelessness through health care and housing. Join us if you believe that no one deserves to be homeless, and that we can do something about it. Learn More


Please join the Council in recognizing HCH Day on August 15, and celebrate your #HCHValue! Part of National Health Center Week, HCH Day is a time to celebrate the vital work of HCH to meet the basic health care needs of people without homes, eliminate health disparities, and end homelessness.

Lily says…What else can be said?
For those of us who have been really, really close to homelessness at some point in our lives, we still don’t fully understand what really being homeless would mean.
It would be one thing if it were just me, but a partner/husband/wife plus a few kiddos would make the burden of homelessness even heavier.
The first thing to go would be health care.
How would we get to the clinic? Suffer the shame of having no address, phone number or income? Let alone no insurance!
If it were me, an ache or pain would be negligible up against my lover or child in pain, but reacting to it immediately might not even be possible.
Here’s where Charles Drew is a “knight in shining armor” which could easily be a Knight in the Night’s shining armor! Not only do they have open clinics at two locations but twice a week Charles Drew uses a mobile unit that goes into the community to get to their clients, not the other way around. This population is admittedly sicker than most of the community around it so, even though they might require more monitoring and care they usually don’t receive it.
I suppose compliance with meds, or adherence to a regular schedule or even having a way to get water to take pills might be non-existent or limited for a homeless person. What about needing a fridge for meds? Forget it!
Health care in the homeless population is a complicated social, psychological and community issue which doesn’t look like it’s magically going away any time in the near future either.
Chronic disease in the homeless population exacerbates the situation too. Finding a person to give them an HIV diagnosis is hard enough when a name and address are attached to the test, but when only a name is available the DIS (Disease Intervention Specialist) has to use other means to track a person down.
The DIS works with others in the community to find these people when necessary but retention in care is a whole different kettle of fish! What about regular HIV visits to the doctor for a viral load test, HIV drug monitoring and tweaking, or a physical examination? This blog isn’t long enough to even get started!
The work is not done because we’ve yet to get to a ZERO VIRAL LOAD in any community I know of…We must continue to advocate for comprehensive HIV testing, different ways to access health care and most of all we need to support all people in our communities who are struggling and possibly homeless as a result of factors outside their choosing.
You can be the one to give your time, money or by some other means assist Charles Drew in its dedication to help end homelessness in OUR COMMUNITY! They need us to make it work.
And don’t forget getting a test for HIV isn’t painful, cost anything or need to be studied for! Knowing your HIV status empowers you for the future! Do it today YOU COUNT!