Going Home: The Role of State Mental Health Authorities to Prevent and End Homelessness Among Individuals with Serious Mental Illness

This resource was selected by SMI Adviser content partners and approved by the SMI Adviser clinical expert team for inclusion in the knowledge base.

Serious mental illness (SMI) is a significant risk factor for homelessness, and the loss of housing can exacerbate existing medical and mental health conditions and create new ones. Of the 553,742 people who are documented as homeless on a given night, 20 percent have an SMI. There are numerous reasons for homelessness among those with SMI, including unpredictable behavior that limits employment, strained relationships with family and friends, and homeless services programs that are difficult to navigate. Living on the street brings a wide range of risks to health and well-being, such as violence, injury, illness, and higher mortality.

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