What is the problem that needs to be addressed? Please describe how it is related to mental health.
Difficulty and complexity exist around informed consent among people experiencing homelessness and/or mental illness and other vulnerable populations. There is not enough epidemiological data to better inform the participants of potential benefits and risks associated with the interventions nor to evaluate the effectiveness of the interventions targeted at these populations.
Why is this a concern for Orange County? What can Orange County and other counties learn from this project?
There is a need to document the potential risks associated with interventions, in particular, those that arise from potentially suboptimal living conditions/environment of shelters hosting this population. People experiencing homelessness and/or mental illness then need to be fully informed of these risks before making a decision to participate in the interventions.
What is currently being done to resolve this problem in our county and throughout the United States? If applicable: Is it working; why or why not?
Patient safety has been an important issue in public policy. However, there are not enough studies on the cause of morbidity and mortality at a system level.
What is new or different about this project idea? Please describe how this differs from what is already being done (Question 6). Please list any research that was done on this topic.
The proposed project should establish a prerequisite for the discipline of medicine for the homeless population.
From this proposed project, we can learn potential difficulties surrounding conducting system level research while managing patient safety risks and providing adequate informed consent. The goal of this project is to gain assurance that there are few to no legal risks associated with collecting/analyzing/sharing information and that people experiencing homelessness/mental illness have access to all relevant information to make informed decisions.
Additional comment from submitter:
There are a number of negative factors that can be involved with supportive housing, including housing failure, housing instability, and loss of personal property between moves. In addition, living with a roommate has its risks, including injury and property damage. These factors should be assessed and addressed.