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Health, Housing and Homelessness

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Global Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 December 2020) | Viewed by 19856

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Psychology, Faculty of Education and Psychology, University of Extremadura, 06006 Badajoz, Spain
Interests: mental health; developmental and educational psychology; health promotion; child welfare; homelessness
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Departament of Devlopmental and Educational Psychology, University of the Basque Country (Avenida de Tolosa 70, 20018 San Sebastian)
Interests: Mental health; Subjetive well-being; Self-concept; Homelessness

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Guest Editor
Centre for sociological research and LUCAS, Centre for Care research and consultancy, KU Leuven
Interests: Social policy; social work; homelessness; evaluation research

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Guest Editor
Centre for Health and Migration, Vienna
Interests: Public Health; Social Determinants of Health; Homelessness, Migration

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues, 

The housing situation and the increase in the number of homeless people is a worrying reality around the world. The World Health Organization is warning about the impact of housing policies on the health of the people. In the same way, the 2018 report of the FEANTSA (European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless) described an increase in the number of homeless people in the European Union, with a possible direct impact on the health of this population under exclusion.

Unfortunately, more information is necessary to understand the impact of housing situations in the health of the populations. The Special Issue "Health, housing and homelessness" invites authors from disciplines such as social policies, psychology, public health, medicine, economics, psychology, demography, and sociology to submit their original and review articles related to analysing the impact on health of homelessness situation and housing policies. Papers from European Union and all other countries are welcome.

Through “Cost Action, CA15218 - Measuring homelessness in Europe” the co-editors of this Special Edition, are well connected to academic researchers, steak holders (housing, policies makers and social care services) and NGOs, as well as other experts.

Potential areas of interest include but not limited to the following:

  • Homelessness health
  • Mental health and housing situation
  • Addictions and health in homelessness
  • Housing and health
  • Social policies and health in social exclusion
  • National studies
  • Prevention policies or interventions

Prof. Fernando Fajardo-Bullón
Prof. Igor Esnaola
Dr. Koen Hermans
Dr. Ursula Trummer
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2500 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • homelessness
  • health
  • housing
  • social inclusion

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

14 pages, 873 KiB  
Article
Associations between Objective and Subjective Housing Status with Individual Mental Health in Guangzhou, China
by Lijian Xie, Suhong Zhou and Lin Zhang
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(3), 930; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18030930 - 21 Jan 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2910
Abstract
Housing is an important social determinant of mental health. However, few studies simultaneously measure the objective housing status (i.e., housing tenure, living space, housing conditions, and housing stability) and subjective housing status (i.e., housing satisfaction) as well as examine their effects on people’s [...] Read more.
Housing is an important social determinant of mental health. However, few studies simultaneously measure the objective housing status (i.e., housing tenure, living space, housing conditions, and housing stability) and subjective housing status (i.e., housing satisfaction) as well as examine their effects on people’s mental health (i.e., stress, anxiety, and depression). Thus, using a sample size of 1003 participants by two-stage random sampling survey in Guangzhou, China, this study applies multivariate ordinary least square regression models to comprehensively explore and compare the associations between objective and subjective housing status with mental health, and then analyze the moderating effects of subjective housing status on the relationships between objective housing status and mental health. The findings suggest that there are significant differences in people’s mental health based on different housing status. The subjective housing status can better explain the variances in mental health than objective housing status. Also, subjective housing status may partly mitigate the adverse impacts of objective housing disadvantages on some aspects of an individual’s mental health. Therefore, housing improvement policies and public health initiatives should be designed based on a comprehensive account of objective and subjective housing characteristics as well as their influences on specific aspects of mental health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Housing and Homelessness)
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16 pages, 354 KiB  
Article
How Structural Compensation Facilitates Health Care for the Homeless. A Comparative View on Four European Union Member States
by Ursula Trummer, Sonja Novak-Zezula, Mariola Chrzanowska, Christos Michalakelis, Roido Mitoula, Adam Rybka, Snejana Sulima and Monika Zielińska-Sitkiewicz
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(23), 9114; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17239114 - 06 Dec 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2484
Abstract
There is robust evidence that homelessness and the associated life conditions of a homeless person may cause and exacerbate a wide range of health problems, while healthcare for the homeless is simultaneously limited in accessibility, availability, and appropriateness. This article investigates legal frameworks [...] Read more.
There is robust evidence that homelessness and the associated life conditions of a homeless person may cause and exacerbate a wide range of health problems, while healthcare for the homeless is simultaneously limited in accessibility, availability, and appropriateness. This article investigates legal frameworks of health care provision, existing knowledge on numbers of homeless to be considered, and current means of health care provision for four EU countries with different economic and public health background: Austria, Greece, Poland, and Romania. National experts investigated the respective regulations and practices in place with desk research. The results show differences in national frameworks of inclusion into health care provision and knowledge on the number of people experiencing homelessness, but high similarity when it comes to main actors of actual health care provision for homeless populations. In all included countries, despite their differences in economic investments and universality of access to public health systems, it is mainly NGOs providing health care to those experiencing homelessness. This phenomenon fits into conceptual frameworks developed around service provision for vulnerable population groups, wherein it has been described as “structural compensation,” meaning that NGOs compensate a structural inappropriateness that can be observed within public health systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Housing and Homelessness)
17 pages, 424 KiB  
Article
Influence of Psychosocial Variables on the Health of People Living in Housing Exclusion
by Fernando Fajardo-Bullón, Jesús Pérez-Mayo, Igor Esnaola, Isobel Anderson and Marcus Knutagård
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(23), 8983; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17238983 - 02 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2197
Abstract
The aim of this study was to analyze the influence of some personal characteristics, health variables, and social support on the self-rated health of people in housing exclusion in Spain. For that purpose, we used the FOESSA Survey of Social Integration and Needs [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to analyze the influence of some personal characteristics, health variables, and social support on the self-rated health of people in housing exclusion in Spain. For that purpose, we used the FOESSA Survey of Social Integration and Needs database, with a final sample of 1574 households. Being more educated and reporting a good life satisfaction stood out as the main factors preventing worse health status. Furthermore, results showed that being female, experiencing poverty-related food insecurity, not having health insurance, experiencing widowhood or partner bereavement, and having caring responsibilities for others or having a disabled person in the household are associated with increased reporting of regular or poor health. On the other hand, being young, having a diagnosed/long-term illness, and a big household size are preventive factors for good health. These results allowed identifying risk and prevention factors to inform interventions to improve the health of those living in housing exclusion. Promoting better education levels, social support, and overall life satisfaction could be important to improve health in this population. Developing social support policies for caring responsibilities and food insecurity must be a priority to improve the health of people living in housing exclusion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Housing and Homelessness)
15 pages, 338 KiB  
Article
Clinician Training in the Adaptation of a Comprehensive Tobacco-Free Workplace Program in Agencies Serving the Homeless and Vulnerably Housed
by Matthew Taing, Bryce Kyburz, Isabel Martinez Leal, Kathy Le, Tzu-An Chen, Virmarie Correa-Fernandez, Teresa Williams, Daniel P. O’Connor, Ezemenari M. Obasi, Kathleen Casey, Litty Koshy and Lorraine R. Reitzel
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(17), 6154; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17176154 - 25 Aug 2020
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 2996
Abstract
Tobacco use is exceedingly high among those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness but not commonly addressed by clinicians. Taking Texas Tobacco Free (TTTF) is a tobacco control program that addresses known clinician barriers to intervention (e.g., low training receipt, limited [...] Read more.
Tobacco use is exceedingly high among those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness but not commonly addressed by clinicians. Taking Texas Tobacco Free (TTTF) is a tobacco control program that addresses known clinician barriers to intervention (e.g., low training receipt, limited resources). Here, we examine the process and outcomes of TTTF’s adaptation within four agencies that provide housing or other services to individuals who are homeless or vulnerably housed. Pre- and post-implementation data were collected from clinicians (N = 68) to assess changes in training receipt, knowledge, and intervention behaviors, relative to program goals. Results indicated significant gains in clinicians’ receipt of training in 9 (of 9) target areas (p’s ≤ 0.0042) and a 53% knowledge gain (p < 0.0001). From pre- to post-implementation, there were mean increases in the use of the 5As (ask, advise, assess, assist, and arrange) and other evidence-based interventions for tobacco cessation, with significant gains seen in assisting residents/clients to quit, arranging follow-ups, and providing or referring for non-nicotine medications (p’s ≤ 0.0491). All program goals, except gains related to advising smokers to quit and the use of specific interventions (behavioral counseling), were met. Overall, TTTF improved clinicians’ capacity to address tobacco use among homeless and vulnerably housed individuals and can serve as a model for tobacco control efforts in similar agencies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Housing and Homelessness)
16 pages, 1441 KiB  
Article
Older Clients’ Pathway through the Adaptation System for Independent Living in the UK
by Wusi Zhou, Adekunle Sabitu Oyegoke, Ming Sun and Hailong Zhu
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(10), 3640; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103640 - 21 May 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2917
Abstract
Housing adaptation is recognized as an effective intervention for successful independent living and has been given a greater political priority. However, the current adaptation implementation is fragmented and sometimes confusing. This study is aimed at examining blockages in the adaptation system in the [...] Read more.
Housing adaptation is recognized as an effective intervention for successful independent living and has been given a greater political priority. However, the current adaptation implementation is fragmented and sometimes confusing. This study is aimed at examining blockages in the adaptation system in the United Kingdom (UK) and identifying practical ways to tackle them. It adopted a mixed-method sequential explanatory research strategy. A questionnaire survey was first conducted in all local authorities in England, Scotland and Wales. This was followed by individual interviews and a focus group with professionals and older clients. The study found that multiple organizations are involved during the delivery of housing adaptations; poor cooperation between them is a major barrier to a seamless service. The adaptation process involves five key stages; there are many inconsistencies and inequities in the process across local authorities. Significant delays are found at all stages, the average length of time taken to complete an adaptation is unacceptably long. There are also many inconsistencies and inequities across different local authorities. This study identified some common deficiencies, which cause inefficiencies and ineffectiveness in housing adaptation practices and makes some recommendations on specific actions that need to be taken at both national and local levels to address them. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Housing and Homelessness)
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18 pages, 333 KiB  
Article
Factors Shaping the Lived Experience of Resettlement for Former Refugees in Regional Australia
by Laura Smith, Ha Hoang, Tamara Reynish, Kim McLeod, Chona Hannah, Stuart Auckland, Shameran Slewa-Younan and Jonathan Mond
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(2), 501; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17020501 - 13 Jan 2020
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 5568
Abstract
Refugees experience traumatic life events with impacts amplified in regional and rural areas due to barriers accessing services. This study examined the factors influencing the lived experience of resettlement for former refugees in regional Launceston, Australia, including environmental, social, and health-related factors. Qualitative [...] Read more.
Refugees experience traumatic life events with impacts amplified in regional and rural areas due to barriers accessing services. This study examined the factors influencing the lived experience of resettlement for former refugees in regional Launceston, Australia, including environmental, social, and health-related factors. Qualitative interviews and focus groups were conducted with adult and youth community members from Burma, Bhutan, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan, Iran, and Sudan, and essential service providers (n = 31). Thematic analysis revealed four factors as primarily influencing resettlement: English language proficiency; employment, education and housing environments and opportunities; health status and service access; and broader social factors and experiences. Participants suggested strategies to overcome barriers associated with these factors and improve overall quality of life throughout resettlement. These included flexible English language program delivery and employment support, including industry-specific language courses; the provision of interpreters; community events fostering cultural sharing, inclusivity and promoting well-being; and routine inclusion of nondiscriminatory, culturally sensitive, trauma-informed practices throughout a former refugee’s environment, including within education, employment, housing and service settings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health, Housing and Homelessness)
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