Local nonprofit secures 92 beds to reduce the community spread of the virus
LOS ANGELES, May 28, 2020 – In partnership with the City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, and a local hotel, National Health Foundation (NHF) is now operating a temporary housing program through Project Roomkey – a statewide initiative that provides temporary housing support to individuals experiencing homelessness to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
This Project Roomkey site is unique because it offers recuperative care for people who need medical support.
Individuals served include seniors and individuals with existing medical conditions, who do not have a place to self-isolate and are at higher risk of hospitalization if they become infected. The hotel is not a walk-up site; participants are referred to the program by homeless service providers. This project will have a significant impact on our local healthcare system and its ability to respond with the resources needed to safely treat patients in need of acute care during this pandemic.
National Health Foundation President & CEO, Kelly Bruno and Executive Director of Housing & Homeless Services Wade Trimmer collaborated with the County to identify and partner with a local hotel that would serve the needs of individuals who require medical support and social services.
“In recognizing that we have the resources and expertise to serve this population, we knew we had a responsibility to be a part of this project and to identify a hotel that will provide a comfortable and dignified experience for incoming guests,” shares Bruno.
At a time when Los Angeles is facing opposition from neighbors to house the homeless, this local hotel and community are stepping up. The hotel accommodates 92 beds over a 90-day period and is providing oversight of janitorial staff and 24/7 on-site security. NHF is staffing the intake, social services, nurses, and guest services teams. Guests are sheltered across four floors, in which at least one social worker and one medical nurse are stationed.
“People experiencing homelessness are especially vulnerable in this crisis, and we’re taking urgent action to get them indoors quickly,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Project Roomkey helps get those at the highest risk into a safer place — and we’re grateful to NHF and all of our service providers for stepping up to help save lives.”
“The County of Los Angeles is very excited to be working with the National Health Foundation and participating in this partnership. This project will ensure that people experiencing homelessness who are particularly vulnerable and who require monitoring of their medical or behavioral health conditions, are provided with the level of care needed in a safe environment,” says Elizabeth Boyce with the County of Los Angeles Department of Health Services Housing for Health program.
Guests are receiving top-tier, comprehensive support throughout their stay; support that is parallel to any of NHF’s other recuperative care facilities. NHF also has the support of other local community organizations: EveryTable, as part of their partnership with the County, provides meals to the guests; and to staff the site NHF is working with Chrysalis, a local non-profit dedicated to serving low-income individuals and those experiencing homelessness with employment support to help them get back on their feet.
By partnering with the City, County and local organizations, NHF is setting the standard for community responses to a pandemic – supporting local businesses, generating job opportunities, and helping the most vulnerable. If you are interested in covering this story, please contact Stephany Rodas at 213-706-1859.
About National Health Foundation
Founded in 1973, National Health Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)3 corporation that works within communities to eliminate barriers to health, address the root causes of poor health, and advocate and empower under-resourced communities to find solutions that lead to lasting change. Embracing the guiding philosophy that health begins where we live, learn, work and play, the organization’s advocacy and work focuses on four key areas: housing, food access, built environment and education.
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