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Title: The health of homeless people : a housing issue
Author: Robinson, David
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1996
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To date, studies of the health of homeless people have been cross-sectional, providing a snapshot in time of factors associated with health and disease but silent on how these links develop through time. In my study the interviews with homeless people were designed to allow a longitudinal analysis of the sequencing, combination and timing of events in health and accommodation histories. Assessment of these histories revealed two key findings. First, the majority of respondents had health problems before becoming homeless. They became and remain homeless because they have not been able to attain or sustain a place in the housing system. Second, the majority of respondents have experienced a deterioration in health that appears to be linked to the physical and servicing environments they have been exposed to since becoming homeless. This study shows that people with health problems are vulnerable to homelessness, and that the health profile of homeless people is as much a reflection of housing inequalities as inefficiencies in the health service. I argue that by tackling these inequalities, housing policy could go some way to meeting the health as well as accommodation needs of homeless people and so be harnessed to the aims of health and social policy. However, in conclusion, I question whether this theoretical goal is achievable given the recent restructuring of the housing system and the associated separation of housing from other areas of health and social policy.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available