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Research Letter
October 28, 2013

Use of Acute Care Services Among Older Homeless Adults

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Geriatrics, Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco
  • 2Hebrew SeniorLife Institute for Aging Research, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 3Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, Boston
  • 4Psychology Service, Veterans Affairs Boston Healthcare System, Boston
JAMA Intern Med. 2013;173(19):1831-1834. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.6627

The median age of homeless single adults in the United States has increased from approximately 35 years in 1990 to nearly 50 years in 2010,1 yet little is known about health care utilization among older homeless adults. Homeless adults 50 years or older have unique medical problems, including high rates of chronic illnesses and geriatric conditions.2 A better understanding of the health care use by this vulnerable population would help to target strategies to improve their care. Thus, we prospectively observed a cohort of older homeless adults to describe and identify modifiable factors associated with emergency department (ED) visits and hospitalizations during a 1-year period.