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Health and Homelessness in Scotland: Publication 19 June 2018

The Health and Homelessness in Scotland report was published on 19 June 2018.

See here for the full report, executive summary and tables document.

Whilst health inequalities across Scotland are well evidenced, this study links homelessness and health datasets for the first time at a national level, to explore the relationship between homelessness and health in Scotland

This study considered 435,853 people who had been in households assessed as homeless or threatened with homelessness between June 2001 and November 2016. These households had been assessed by Scottish Local Authorities under section 28 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987. These people formed the Ever Homeless Cohort (EHC).

Each person in the EHC was matched on age and sex to a non-homeless individual from the 20% least deprived areas of Scotland, and a non-homeless individual from the 20% most deprived areas of Scotland. This formed two control cohorts - the Least Deprived Cohort (LDC) and the Most Deprived Cohort (MDC). Each cohort had the same number of people and the same age–sex distribution. In total, the study contained over 1.3 million people.

See here for Powerpoint slides that summarise the report and findings.

Health and Homelessness Data Linkage

The project aims to build upon analysis undertaken by Fife Council and NHS Fife who have locally managed to link health and homelessness data. A copy of their analysis is available at: http://www.gov.scot/Resource/0047/00476237.pptx

The project will link the homelessness data with a number of health datasets to quantify the health needs of the homelessness population compared with the general population. The health needs to be considered in this project are:

  • Accident and Emergency Attendance

  • Alcohol Related Admissions

  • Drug Misuse Related Admissions

  • Emergency Admissions related to Injury and Poisoning

  • Psychiatric Admissions

  • Non-attendance at Outpatient Appointments.

The project will provide an important first step in quantifying the use of a range of health services by homeless households.  Analysis will also consider how much usage is additional to the general population, taking into account age and gender.

Further work, which is outside the scope of this project, may then look at the cost/benefit analysis of interventions compared with maintaining the status quo.

The key research questions are as follows, depending on whether the health data is linked to the homelessness data or vice versa.

  1. Through the analysis of the following health datasets, what number and proportion of episodes can be attributed to homeless people? [Linking the homelessness data onto the health datasets]

  2. How many homeless households have multiple or complex needs?[Linking the health datasets to the homelessness data].

Associated Documents

Downloadable documents:

Title:Health and Homelessness Data Linkage
Description:Health and Homelessness Data Linkage Scotland
File:Project Application Document to ALG (Version August 2015 [DOCX, 60.7 kb: 14 Aug 2015]
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File:Privacy Impact Assessment - version 2 [DOCX, 141.4 kb: 25 Jan 2016]
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File:H2H Personal Data File Specification [DOC, 144.4 kb: 28 Jan 2016]
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File:H2H Personal Data File Specification [PDF, 250.3 kb: 28 Jan 2016]
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File:PBPP Application 1516-0234 Waugh - Approval with conditions [PDF, 145.9 kb: 26 Feb 2016]
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File:PBPP Application 1516-0234: Health and Homelessness data linkage (revised 26 September 2016) [DOCX, 4929.7 kb: 10 Feb 2017]
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File:20161208 Amendment 10.11.2016 Approval 1516-0234 v1 [PDF, 103.7 kb: 10 Feb 2017]
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File:20161208 Conditions Met 1516-0234 Waugh v1 [PDF, 91.5 kb: 10 Feb 2017]
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File:Powerpoint slides - summary of report findings [PPTX, 4400.9 kb: 26 Jul 2018]
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NRS - LA Data Processing Agreement

Downloadable documents:

Title:Health and Homelessness Data Linkage
Description:Health and Homelessness Data Linkage Scotland
File:NRS - LA Data Processing Agreement [DOC, 103.9 kb: 05 Apr 2016]
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File:NRS - LA Data Processing Agreement [PDF, 217.7 kb: 05 Apr 2016]
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How to Upload H2H Data to NRS

Downloadable documents:

Title:Health and Homelessness Data Linkage
Description:Health and Homelessness Data Linkage Scotland
File:How to Upload H2H Data to National Records of Scotland using the Thru System [DOCX, 1109.5 kb: 25 Apr 2016]
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File:How to Upload H2H Data to National Records of Scotland using the Thru System [PDF, 1135.8 kb: 25 Apr 2016]
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