Connecting Chicago's Homeless With Healthcare
Sober mental and physical health are key ingredients to getting our homeless guests off the streets, and staying employed. Yet many of Chicago's most vulnerable often have had to choose between paying their rent or paying a medical bill - and getting off of needed medications starts a downward spiral that is hard to get out of.
At Care For Friends, we know that there are many healthcare resources available to anyone in need - at low or no cost. But often, our Friends aren't aware of where to go or how to get these services. Our Healthcare For Friends program connects guests with caregivers who can improve their quality of life - and now nearly 60% of our guests have found a permanent medical home.
Brian describes a guest who got insurance, and then scheduled for his first medical checkup through Care For Friends - and who learned you don't have to have an urgent health crisis to visit the doctor.
Aside from referrals, our Healthcare for Friends program also provides on-site health services. Dr. Mark Shields describes the general healthcare screenings available at Care For Friends.
"We were able to connect 18 Friends with healthcare providers, including two who went to much needed dental and eye care appointments. One particular friend now proudly sports his new eyeglasses when he visits with us."
- Caseworker who attends our community meals.
Dr. Kevin Malone describes the importance of foot care to homeless folks - who are often on their feet in the same pair of shoes and socks for long periods of time.
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