Implementing the Street Psychiatry Model in New Haven, CT: Community-Based Care for People Experiencing Unsheltered Homelessness


"Street psychiatry" is an innovative model that serves people experiencing unsheltered homelessness, a vulnerable population with increased rates of mental illness and substance use disorders. Through community-based delivery of mental health and addiction treatment, street psychiatry helps the street-dwelling population overcome barriers to accessing care through traditional routes. Throughout the United States, street psychiatry programs have arisen in multiple cities, often in partnership with street medicine programs. We discuss the philosophy of street psychiatry, document operational highlights involved in the development of a street psychiatry program in New Haven, CT, suggest key ingredients to implementing a street psychiatry program, and explore challenges and future frontiers. Street psychiatry is an effective person-centered model of service delivery with the potential to be applied in a variety of urban settings to serve people experiencing street homelessness.

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Category Tags

Harm Reduction and Substance Use; Healthcare; Housing; Mental Health and Wellness; Social Services