The move follows after the hospital announced it would have to shutter the services this month due to a lack of funding.
The state is stepping in to provide temporary funding for clinical services at the Roundhouse Hotel, which serves as a transitional housing site for individuals from Mass. and Cass struggling with addiction and homelessness, after Boston Medical Center announced it would have to shutter its services at the site this month due to a lack of financial backing.
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The funding will allow clinical services to continue at the site through the end of July. The state’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services said the extension will allow for a “planned winddown” of services at the hotel.
The Roundhouse, located near the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue and Melnea Cass Boulevard in Boston, is one of the six low-threshold, transitional housing sites established by Mayor Michelle Wu’s administration in January 2022 to serve individuals living in encampments in the area, which has become the epicenter of the region’s overlapping crises of addiction, homelessness, and mental health.
In partnership with the city, Boston Medical Center has been operating a transitional care clinic and stabilization care center in the hotel, offering medical services to help individuals address their mental health and substance use needs. Case management and stabilization services have also been on hand to support individuals in the area seeking a path to recovery and a transition to permanent housing.
In February, the hospital said it would have to end its clinical services by the end of March due to a lack of long-term funding.
Extending the clinical services at the Roundhouse into the summer aims to allow the “winddown of services and transition of patients to appropriate clinical settings as needed, ” according to the state, which identified the hotel as a “unique and critical model of care in the area.”
“This winddown (an alternative to abrupt closure) will help lower the overall risk of overdose deaths and emergency department visits, and increase access to medical services and linkages to housing and appropriate [substance use disorder] care that are evidenced-based and have demonstrated impact in addressing unsheltered homelessness and [substance use disorder] in the area,” the state said in a statement.
Separate from the clinical services at the site, Boston Medical Center has said it has funding for the 60 units of transitional housing it operates at the site “through June.”
BMC and the city did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Wednesday about the funding announcement.
The state said it will continue to work “diligently on long-term multifaceted interventions that include closure of the RoundHouse and identification of longer-term placements outside the area.”
“EOHHS will continue to support long-term, decentralized, strategies, like DPH’s Bureau of Substance and Addiction Services’ Statewide Low Threshold Permanent and Temporary Housing Programs, that focus on providing successful, evidence-based, long-term housing and clinical supports for individuals experiencing unsheltered homelessness and substance-use disorder,” the state said.
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Source : https://www.boston.com/news/local-news/2023/03/15/state-funding-clinical-services-mass-and-cass-roundhouse-hotel/