Advice from a specialist GP in homeless healthcare
This information is sourced from Dr Dana Beale, Specialist GP and joint homeless health lead, North West London
Q. I’ve been asked to write a support letter for housing for my homeless patient. What should I include and what assertions do I need to make about their vulnerability?
A. Housing support letters have existed since long before Covid-19. However, it is useful now to think of them from two aspects;
- what medical conditions might make them more vulnerable than the ‘average person facing homelessness’
- what conditions might make them more vulnerable to Covid-19 (e.g. if they were to move into crowded accommodation with high numbers using shared facilities)
The attached template letter gives a brief outline of what you might include, as well as the standard phrase used to help determine medical vulnerability/priority need for housing
Sometimes it may not feel possible to make a judgement about their vulnerability compared to the ‘average person’ – simply then produce a ‘statement of fact’ medical letter without this phrase. If no Covid-related vulnerabilities again the phrase regarding this can be removed