Peninsula Community Health Services (PCHS) strives to eliminate health disparities in our community. This commitment is highlighted by their recent success with the Stand By Me project, a care coordination effort in partnership with the Salvation Army. This model aims to remove barriers to health care, allowing many to access essential health services conveniently on-site at the Salvation Army.
This program is one of many examples of PCHS’s commitment to serving the community. Through perseverance and creative problem solving, staff are engaging with more individuals than ever before and working to address the determinants of health. “The most important thing is to show up and keep showing up and to work with people to figure out answers...we did not, nor do not know everything about housing, food, disability, etc. but the team of staff there just kept working through challenges to learn about more and more resources,” Peninsula Community Health Services shared.
To date, the program has already served over 503 individuals, 241 of which are experiencing homelessness. “Every quarter that we look at the patient volume and scope of services being utilized we are astounded by the level of engagement.”
There have been many success stories. One includes an older male with a decade's long history of both substance use disorder, homelessness, and other health concerns. Through this program he has received regular medical and dental care as well as successfully completed Medication Assisted Treatment and receives ongoing behavioral health care. Perhaps most significantly, he has been successfully housed.
The benefit of the program comes to the bottom line as well, costs, “helping this vulnerable population have easy low-barrier access to care and social services is very cost effective when it comes to overall health care costs.” PCHS plans to sustain this program moving forward.
PCHS attributes much of the program's success to their partnership with the Salvation Army, who provides space and builds client trust. “The power of partnerships is synergistic and by each organization coming together to help people in the ways they each know best...is paving a pathway for people to enjoy genuine successes.”