Students and faculty from the USC Health Sciences campus partner with the Hope through Housing Foundation to help low-income and disabled residents living in affordable housing.
By USC Health Sciences Public Relations and Marketing
National Community Renaissance (CORE) and its Hope through Housing Foundation are partnering with the Keck School of Medicine of USC and the USC Health Sciences campus health professional schools to help low-income seniors and disabled residents living in affordable housing.
The Keck Interprofessional Geriatric Group is a pilot project involving USC faculty and health professional students at the Keck School, the Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, the Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy, the School of Pharmacy and the Ostrow School of Dentistry. The inter-professional (IP) student-faculty teams will assist chronically ill residents with limited access to medical care.
“We need to determine methodologies and innovations that will address the care of our senior and disabled population,” said Steve PonTell, president and chief executive officer of National CORE. “The Affordable Care Act includes provisions for hearty home-and-community-based growth. This program brings the services needed most to a vulnerable group that has limited access to care and treatment.”
Over an eight-month period, the IP teams will work individually with the Hope Through Housing residents enrolled in the program and to assess and make recommendations for their health needs. The program will also offer health education talks to the entire housing community.
“Comprehensive geriatric care is best given in inter-professional teams, whereby each health professional is working within their expertise to meet the multiple and complex health needs of the elderly,” said Jo Marie Reilly, M.D., co-director of the Keck School Primary Care and Community Medicine Program.
The assessments will take place in familiar surroundings – the residents’ homes – and a focused plan of care will be created. Said Reilly, “As health care strives to be more efficient and patient-centered, our health professional schools are training future professionals – professionals who are prepared to meet and understand the roles that multiple providers play in meeting community health needs.”
PonTell said he expects this model “to be replicable and to show that this population will experience a favorable change in their health with this kind of intervention.”
National CORE is the third largest national nonprofit developer of affordable housing, having serviced more than 250,000 residents in the past 20 years. During the past 15 years, National CORE’s Hope through Housing subsidiary has provided more than 2 million hours in supportive services to enhance quality of life, including preschool, afterschool and senior wellness programs.
Based in Rancho Cucamonga, CORE has 80 developments serving more than 25,000 residents in California, Texas, Arkansas and Florida.