National Health and Homelessness event to be held in Edinburgh

nhs-health-scotlandA national Health and Homelessness event is being held in Edinburgh today and tomorrow hosted by NHS Health Scotland at the Grassmarket Community Project.

Attended by over 100 delegates, the event aims to bring people together from different sectors to hear from key speakers about recent research and practice and to discuss their role in the prevention of homelessness.

The intention is to support individuals and organisations to work together to improve the poor health outcomes and severe health inequalities experienced by people who experience homelessness.

Dr Graham Foster, director of public health, NHS Forth Valley and Dr Andrew Fraser, director of public health science at NHS Health Scotland are chairing the event.

Speakers include Dr Gregor Smith, deputy chief medical officer; Kenny Forsyth, chief executive, Streetwork; Professor Sarah Johnsen, Herriot Watt University; Martin Cawley, chief executive, Turning Point Scotland and John Froggatt, deputy director, Child and Maternal Health, Children and Families Division, Scottish Government.

Key presentations recorded at the Faculty for Homeless and Inclusion Health Conference held in London earlier this month will also be shown and discussed. These presentations include a call to action on what needs to happen from Professor Sir Michael Marmot.

Dr Andrew Fraser said: “For those experiencing chronic or recurring episodes of homelessness, homelessness is the visible ice-berg of deep inequality which develops over a person’s life and often has its roots in the early years. We need to share what we know from research and practice on homelessness and join up policies and services to prevent the devastating health and social impacts that homelessness has.

“It is vital that health, housing, the voluntary sector and the range of public services work together with people and families to provide effective support for homeless people and to intervene as early as possible to avoid homelessness for those in danger of losing a secure home.”

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