Pacific Hospital PDA Nimble Grant will be used to establish Telehealth Access rooms at each of the five shelter sites and one Women’s Day Center to increase access to healthcare among families experiencing homelessness, particularly those identifying as BIPOC.
Mary’s Place has identified a room or space in each of their shelters to be set aside for telehealth access, and will equip each room with essential supplies to ensure families can connect to care, including a desktop computer with video and speaker capabilities. A printer and scanner will allow families to send documents to their healthcare providers and print follow-up instructions or appointment reminders. Signs and instructions on connecting to care will be available in each room translated into commonly-spoken languages to improve accessibility. With COVID-19, Mary’s Place is conscientious of keeping public spaces safe for families, and will ensure that furniture in the room is plastic and easy to clean and that ample protective equipment and cleaning supplies are available in each Telehealth Access Room, including disposable headphones, masks, and other supplies received through donations and community partnerships.
The Telehealth Access Rooms will be equipped and maintained by Mary’s Place Health Services team as an extension of their on-site clinics. Led by their Clinical Services Director, the health services team includes three registered nurses, a behavioral health specialist, an administrative director, and a care coordinator, who work in partnership with skilled volunteers from groups such as Bastyr Health and the Seattle University School of Nursing to provide onsite medical care for families, connect families to insurance, and ensure families identify and access health care services in the long-term. While Dr. Johnson and the administrative director will oversee the set up and management of Telehealth Access rooms, nurses and volunteers will work together to promote Telehealth services, and facilitate access to telehealth appointments. Rooms can be reserved by all guests, with 30 minutes between appointments to ensure privacy and time to sanitize the room before the next use.
Sometimes a single room will not be sufficient to meet guests’ needs to access telehealth. For example, a healthcare provider may wish to observe an activity that is more suited to take place in family’s room. For these instances, Mary’s Place will also purchase a tablet computer for each shelter that can support mobile access to telehealth, and also be used as an additional resource to connect to Language Line for interpretation services during appointments as needed. Tablets will also be managed by the Health Services team to ensure appropriate use of resources depending on guests’ medical needs.
Mary’s Place Seattle
Empowering homeless women, children and families to reclaim their lives by providing shelter, nourishment, resources, healing and hope in a safe community. Mary’s Place is a leading voice for homeless women, children, and families in emergency situations. We empower women to reclaim their lives by offering community, acceptance, hope and dignity. Our work keeps struggling families together and provides practical tools and resources that help women find housing and employment. We inspire the community to support homeless women and families through advocacy, partnerships, volunteerism and philanthropy.