The Liberal Party has pledged more than $2.2M to extend the Health on the Streets Program (HoTS) program, delivered by Coast and Country Primary Care, for three years if re-elected on May 21.
HoTS provides healthcare services, assessments and supports from a custom van that travels to rough-sleeper hotspots and responds to community referrals.
HoTS also provides screenings, health planning, mental health, drug and alcohol and sexual health assessments, and appropriate interventions.
Member for Robertson, Lucy Wicks, said since 2019 Health on the Streets has assisted hundreds of people sleeping rough on the Central Coast.
“HoTS has made a difference in the lives of people who have fallen through the cracks and not been able to access this kind of care in other ways,” Wicks said.
“With this additional funding for the next three years, HoTS can continue the phenomenal work they do, providing support and services for those in our community who need it most.”
Coast and Country Primary Care CEO, Kathy Beverly, said the HoTS program was a unique, holistic mobile and outreach health clinic which in its first two years of operations has helped more than 500 people.
“HoTS provides access to healthcare and social services for homeless people and rough sleepers on the Central Coast, who may otherwise fall through the gaps, and we are thrilled to be in a position to continue this life-saving work,” Beverly said.
“Since 2020, the program has diverted non-urgent cases from hospitals, reduced emergency hospital admissions, reduced the transmission of blood-borne diseases and sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhoea and hepatitis C through education and treatment, and improved healthcare and the general state of physical and mental health of the homeless population on the Central Coast.
“The success of our model is largely due to the commitment and passion of the team, both clinical and outreach, to advocate for timely and inclusive access to care and support services.
“We also acknowledge the support of our partners including Coast Shelter, Mary Mac’s Place, Central Coast Local Health Service, Uniting and many others.”
The outreach team also helps homeless and rough sleepers access accommodation, social security and rehabilitation services.
Media release, May 9
Member for Robertson, Lucy Wicks