A local program that aims to connect homeless individuals with housing in order to both improve their health and cut health care costs will expand.
The partnership between Community Human Services and Medicaid plan UPMC for You can now serve only about 25 people at a time, but officials from the state, UPMC and Community Human Services, said Monday they aim to expand that to several hundred people in the coming years, some outside Allegheny County.
“We have seen ample evidence that this is a good program, and ample evidence that it is cost-effective, and we think scaling it is a great opportunity, and that’s what we will begin to do,” said Diane Holder, president and CEO of UPMC Health Plan.
The health plan pays CHS for case managers to connect homeless people to long-term housing. Medicaid dollars, which are a mix of state and federal funds, cannot be used to pay for housing.
Nonprofit Community Human Services works with landlords to place individuals in long-term housing and support them, said Jeremy Carter, chief housing officer at Community Human Services.
The program identifies those with at least one year of high health care costs who are able to live independently, follow a health plan developed by UPMC Health Plan, and who met a federal Department of Housing and