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Cityscape: Volume 20 Number 2 | The Housing-Health Connection


The goal of Cityscape is to bring high-quality original research on housing and community development issues to scholars, government officials, and practitioners. Cityscape is open to all relevant disciplines, including architecture, consumer research, demography, economics, engineering, ethnography, finance, geography, law, planning, political science, public policy, regional science, sociology, statistics, and urban studies.

Cityscape is published three times a year by the Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The Housing-Health Connection

Volume 20, Number 2

Mark D. Shroder

Michelle P. Matuga

Connecting Fragmented Systems: Public Housing Authority Partnerships With the Health Sector

Stephen Lucas
Council of Large Public Housing Authorities

  • Objectives: The primary objective was to learn about the types of health partnerships and priorities large public housing authorities (PHAs) have developed to improve resident and community health.
  • Methods: The Council for Large Public Housing Authorities (CLPHA) developed a survey that catalogued PHAs’ partnerships with the health sector to gain insight into health-related initiatives for residents. CLPHA conducted 15 indepth interviews to develop a survey instrument that was administered online in 2017. Participants included 39 PHAs (57-percent response rate) that collectively serve 24 percent of the 3.5 million U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development-assisted public housing and housing choice voucher households nationally (n = 847,908).
  • Results: Large PHAs report high engagement with public health entities and community-based social service providers. Respondents also report working with healthcare service providers, including behavioral health providers and federally qualified health centers. The most common health-related activities in which PHAs are engaged include healthcare service coordination (87 percent) and improving healthy community resources (67 percent). Perceived barriers to establishing healthhousing partnerships and health-related programming or alignment include concerns about privacy or liability and lack of resources or capacity.
  • Conclusions: Large PHAs’ level of engagement with the health sector vary widely by agency as does the depth and breadth of established health partnerships.

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