Public service use by residents of Jackson Hinds Gardens before and after enrollment

Stephanie Moses, The University of Texas School of Public Health


Homelessness is associated with high use of public services such as health care and criminal justice services. Intervention designs to reverse homelessness have broadly fallen into two categories: either standard care which employs requisitely addressing the causes of homelessness, or housing first, which emphasizes provision of permanent housing without requisitely addressing the causes of homelessness. Multiple cities have recently commenced housing first interventions. Locally, Houston’s first housing first development is the Jackson Hinds Gardens project. The purpose of this study is to analyze the public service use of residents of housing first in Houston. Residents of Jackson Hinds Gardens who have been enrolled for at least 6 months were evaluated for public service use for an equal amount of time preceding and during their residence at Jackson Hinds. Resident interactions with county health services and criminal justice entities were determined by electronic database searches; these data were supplemented by life experience interview data. Service usage values pre- and post-enrollment at Jackson Hinds Gardens were compared by paired t-test analyses. We found that ER and inpatient usage decreased following enrollment in Jackson Hinds, although these reductions were not significant. In contrast, outpatient care and number of medications significantly increased following enrollment. These analyses inform on the effects of housing first in another major city, as well as informing the ethical considerations regarding housing first versus standard care.

Subject Area

Mental health|Public health

Recommended Citation

Moses, Stephanie, "Public service use by residents of Jackson Hinds Gardens before and after enrollment" (2010). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1483400.