In partnership with the city of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, Los Angeles County Department of Health Services and a local hotel, National Health Foundation is now operating a temporary housing program through Project Roomkey – a statewide initiative that provides temporary housing support to individuals experiencing homelessness to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
This Project Roomkey site, the name of which is confidential, is unique because it offers recuperative care for people who need medical support. Individuals served include seniors and individuals with existing medical conditions, who do not have a place to self-isolate and are at higher risk of hospitalization if they become infected. The hotel is not a walk-up site; participants are referred to the program by homeless service providers. This project will have a significant impact on the local health care system and its ability to respond with the resources needed to safely treat patients in need of acute care during this pandemic.
National Health Foundation President and CEO Kelly Bruno and Executive Director of Housing & Homeless Services Wade Trimmer collaborated with the county to identify and partner with a local hotel that would serve the needs of individuals who require medical support and social services.
“In recognizing that we have the resources and expertise to serve this population, we knew we had a responsibility to be a part of this project and to identify a hotel that will provide a comfortable and dignified experience for incoming guests,” Bruno said.
At a time when Los Angeles is facing opposition from neighbors to house the homeless, this local hotel and community are stepping up. The hotel accommodates 92 beds over a 90-day period and is providing oversight of janitorial staff and 24/7 on-site security. NHF is staffing the intake, social services, nurses and guest services teams. Guests are sheltered across four floors, in which at least one social worker and one medical nurse are stationed.
“People experiencing homelessness are especially vulnerable in this crisis, and we’re taking urgent action to get them indoors quickly,” Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said. “Project Roomkey helps get those at the highest risk into a safer place – and we’re grateful to NHF and all of our service providers for stepping up to help save lives.”
For information, visit nationalhealthfoundation.org.
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