CHCs Provide Health Care for the Homeless

On December 18, 2013, Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, one of Colorado’s Community Health Centers (CHCs), held the twenty-fourth annual homeless person’s vigil. The vigil honored individuals who had lived and died on the streets of Denver in 2013. Over 100 names were read, which shows why affordable, accessible, and high quality health care services for people experiencing homelessness are so essential.

While high health care costs and debt related to medical expenses can be a contributing cause to homelessness, homelessness also exacerbates health conditions. Individuals experiencing homelessness face many barriers to accessing the care they need such as affordability, transportation, and availability of services, especially mental health and substance abuse treatment. Without a stable place to live, chronic diseases such as diabetes and hypertension are extremely difficult to manage. People living on the streets are more likely to be victims of violence and to be exposed to harsh weather conditions. Healing from wounds or illnesses is much harder without a safe, warm place to do so. It becomes very difficult to prioritize health needs when finding shelter, food, and safety are consistent struggles.

While people experiencing homelessness face many health access barriers, CHCs throughout Colorado are helping to meet these complex needs. All CHCs provide affordable, culturally competent services to vulnerable populations in their communities, and some—like the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless—provide services targeted at the homeless population. Besides having accessible locations and sliding fee scales for individuals who do not have insurance or incomes, CHCs provide comprehensive services so that their patients can access not only medical but also dental, vision, and behavioral health services. CHCs also offer enabling services such as case management and health education, which provides additional support to vulnerable populations. CHCs are having an important impact on people experiencing homelessness in their communities!

If you’re interested in working with vulnerable populations in Colorado, CHCs offer a way to have a significant impact on the most underserved populations in the state. Check out the job opportunities below, or visit the CHAMPS Job Bank for more employment opportunities. Or, to learn more about the impact that CHCs have on their communities, visit CCHN’s website for information about Colorado’s 19 CHCs.

Recently Posted Jobs at Colorado Community Health Centers:

1641 RN or LPN Health Educator/Patient Navigator Colorado Coalition for the Homeless
Denver, CO
1644 Dental Hygienist – SBHC-DPS Sealant Program Denver Health Community Health Services
Denver, CO
1640 Clinical Case Manager Colorado Coalition for the Homeless
Denver, CO
1638 Pharmacist Colorado Coalition for the Homeless
Denver, CO
1639 Psychiatric Registered Nurse Colorado Coalition for the Homeless
Denver, CO
1634 Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Mountain Family Health Centers
Glenwood Springs, CO
1636 Patient Navigator II Denver Health Community Health Services
Denver, CO

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