Washington hospital program provides shelter for homeless patients in recovery

A pilot program run by Bremerton, Wash.-based Harrison Medical Center offers homeless patients a place to stay while still in recovery after a hospitalization, according to The Seattle Times.

Here are four things to know:

1. Harrison Medical Center pays for three beds at the Benedict House, a men's shelter also located in Bremerton, to house eligible respite patients.

2. The hospital launched the programs in July through a collaboration with its parent company Tacoma, WA.-based CHI Franciscan Health, Kent, WA.-based Catholic Community Services and Wheaton Way, WA.-based Peninsula Community Health Services.

3. Hospital officials said they hope the program will help homeless patients receive appropriate treatment and follow-up care after a discharge, while also opening up more beds and reducing readmissions rates at the hospital.

4. At present, the beds are only open to male patients, although program supporters said they hope to add more beds across the county.

"Although it doesn’t solve the affordable-housing crisis in our area, it does put one more piece into the complex puzzle of healthcare for the vulnerable in our society," Jennifer Kreidler-Moss, CEO of Peninsula Community Health, told The Seattle Times.

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