January 30, 2023
A new pilot program will deliver healthcare directly to south-west Victorians experiencing homelessness.
WRAD Health, with funding from WestVic Primary Health Network, is embarking on a pilot program for six months to bring medical services to those who may be experiencing homelessness or sleeping rough. The team of a nurse, alcohol and other drug clinician and doctor will work together with existing support services to the homeless to provide access to healthcare.
The WRAD Health Project Connect aims to engage people into comprehensive medical care through provision of a holistic approach providing the opportunity for assessment of a person’s physical health needs and if required further assessment and management of drug and alcohol and/or mental health related conditions.
WRAD Health operations manager Mark Powell said every night, thousands of people sleep rough on Australian streets because they don’t have access to safe, secure housing. “They are some of our most vulnerable people who can have complex health needs that deserve expert care outside the structures of the current office-based medical services,” Mr Powell said.
It is estimated that 50 people in every 10,000 are experiencing homelessness in Australia.
Mr Powell said not all people sleeping rough use drugs and alcohol. “However, we know from research that those people experiencing homelessness are at greater risk for developing substance use problems as they strive to cope with the stress and challenges of homelessness.
“WRAD Health hopes to deliver a sustainable model that can continue to meet the health needs of those vulnerable members of our community.”
For more information ring 55 645 777 or to make an appointment.
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WRAD HEALTH’s vision is to advance the health and wellbeing of those in the South Western Region of Victoria affected by Addictive behaviours and to promote optimal enjoyment of life.
WRAD HEALTH seeks to provide comprehensive, holistic support and treatment to individuals and others affected by addictive behaviors and associated issues.
The philosophy of harm minimisation underpins the delivery of all programs offered by WRAD HEALTH. This principle recognises that people in our society use both licit and illicit drugs, and that drugs can be used in ways that are more or less harmful to individuals, families and society. Harm minimisation offers a number of options designed to reduce the harm of drug use to the user and society.
Emergency call 000
For medical issues call South West Healthcare 55 631666
For mental health issues call SWH emergency dep't 55 631 666 or 1800 808 284
For drug and alcohol issues call Directline 1800 888 236
For Lifeline call 13 11 14
Or click on the links below for help.