Permanent Housing for the Homeless Lowers Health Care Costs

Permanent Housing for the Homeless Lowers Health Care Costs

Better Health Through Housing is a supportive housing program designed to reduce healthcare costs by moving homeless people from emergency rooms into stable housing.

The University of Illinois Hospital decided to participate in this program as part of its health equity mission. Its staff later discovered that besides providing housing, the program improved health and reduced the frequency of expensive emergency room visits.


Video Spotlight: Ted Talk: Housing Is Health


This post is based on a 90.9 WBUR report, To Reduce Chronic Homelessness, a Chicago Hospital Is Treating It as A Medical Condition, by J. Hobson, February 21, 2019; and the YouTube video, Health Equity: Housing is Health | Steve Brown | TEDxRushU, by Tedx, January 16, 2019. Image source: Ingram Publishing

Discussion Questions:

1. Is homelessness an operations issue?

Guidance: The homeless are “customers” of multiple processes performed by many organizations: hospitals, prisons, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, police departments, Medicaid, etc. As a result, they directly influence the operations of these organizations. Very interestingly, the article mentions that to achieve better solutions to the problems experienced or caused by the homeless, it’s better to coordinate processes and resources than to work in silos.

2. How Continue reading

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Stable Workforce Scheduling Can Improve Worker Health and Performance

Stable Workforce Scheduling Can Improve Worker Health and Performance

March 9, 2019

The service sector faces tremendous fluctuations in demand for their services, as well as low profit margins.  As a result, staffing in the service industry may employ a Just-In-Time (JIT) staffing approach.  In other words, wait until the last moment to call in employees.

This JIT approach results in short notice of an upcoming shift, cancellation of work at the last moment, and variable hours.

Therefore, working in the service sector in many cases means low pay and few fringe benefits, but it may also mean unstable schedules because workers have little control of their work hours.

The consequence of JIT employee scheduling are unhappy workers with poor sleep quality.  Findings have shown that stabilizing employee schedules leads to increases in sales and worker productivity.


Video Spotlight: Philly workers share why they need a fair workweek


This post is based on The Hill article, For job quality, time is more than money, by Daniel Schneider and Kristen Harknett, February 1, 2019; the Work Life Law report,  Stable Scheduling Increases Productivity and Sales: The Stable Scheduling Study by Joan C. Williams, Susan J. Lambert, and Saravanan Kesavan, 2018; and the YouTube video, Philly workers share Continue reading

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