Broken bones, burns, infections, and other acute medical needs require time and consistent care to heal. The weeks after intense procedures like surgery or chemotherapy require rest. And end-of-life care requires round the clock, specialized compassion and care. But rest, recovery, and attention are hard to come by on the streets and in shelters, where people experiencing homelessness lack reliable access to specialized medical care, concrete resources, privacy, and one-on-one support. This puts patients at risk of further complications and adds to the unnecessary indignities of homelessness.
In 1985, we opened the first medical respite facility in the nation–a safe place for patients experiencing homelessness to recover from short-term injuries, illnesses, and hospital stays. This flagship 104-bed medical respite facility at Jean Yawkey Place, called Barbara McInnis House, provides 24/7 care for patients who are too sick for life in shelters or the street, but not sick enough to occupy a hospital bed. The 20-bed Stacy Kirkpatrick House is a similar step-down facility, helping patients transition from round-the-clock care back to shelter or, when possible, into long-term housing and treatment.
Our medical respite program has since inspired dozens more nationwide. While patients may arrive to us, or to similar facilities across the country, in need of wound care, medications, or behavioral health support and stabilization, our hope is that they leave with much more–a treatment plan, ongoing support from our staff, a sense of dignity, and a path toward healing.
For patients and providers looking for more complete information on services provided at Barbara McInnis House, please see our FAQ sheet.
For providers looking to admit a patient, please see our admittance requirements before filling out an admission form.