(Ill) Health and access to health care in homeless people: A literature review
Duration: July 2012 - September 2012
Publication: LBI-HTA Projektbericht Nr. 63: http://eprints.hta.lbg.ac.at/980
Additional team: Markus Reichel
In Austria, the majority of the population has access to health care (99.9% in 2011). Nevertheless, there are groups of persons who have no access, either because of legal reasons (e.g. people without health insurance) or because of other barriers (language problems, discrimination etc.). This is particularly the case for homeless people which does not only raise questions of equity but often results in major health problems in this population linked to larger public health problems (e.g. infections). Hence, strategies need to be developed to provide adequate health care access and provision of prevention and curative services for homeless persons in Austria.
Since little is known on the health situation and the barriers to adequate health care of homeless people in Austria the first step to define adequate services is to learn about the health problems in this population from literature and available data.
Aim of the project
The project aims at carrying out a literature review that summarises the current evidence on the (ill) health and on access barriers to health care among homeless people. The focus is on the homeless population in urban areas.
1) What is the health situation in homeless people according to international literature and national data?
a. What types of illnesses occur in what frequency?
b. What long-term health and economic consequences are described in the literature?
2) What barriers for health care access (legal, organisational, individual) exist according to the literature in homeless people and what patterns of health care utilisation can be identified?
1) Systematic and unsystematic literature search in standard medical and social-science databases; handsearch for Austrian data and reports from (inter)national organisations (e.g. WHO)
2) Selection of literature according to pre-defined criteria
3) Categorisation and summary of results in a written report