Location

Downtown PHX

Telephone (S.H.O.W. Clinic)

(602) 496-0837

Welcome To Street Medicine Phoenix

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STREET MEDICINE PHOENIX | CRONKITE NEWS

Who Are We?

Street Medicine Phoenix is a student-driven interprofessional health care and social justice team consisting of students and faculty primarily from the University of Arizona, Arizona State University, and Northern Arizona University. Street Medicine Phoenix operates as an outreach arm for Student Health Outreach for Wellness (SHOW). SMP utilizes a biopsychosocial, trauma-informed model of care, meaning each individual’s well-being is holistically addressed in the context of their specific goals and needs. Our student volunteers and preceptors provide this goal-negotiated, person-centered care to ensure that each individual experiencing homelessness obtains what they need to improve their overall quality of life. 

The premise of SMP is simple: bring the services to the people. Individuals experiencing homelessness lack access to community resources and health care services for many reasons including transportation limitations, lack of awareness, fear of stigma, and distrust of institutions. SMP was developed to fill this gap by bringing needed but underutilized services to where individuals experiencing homelessness are: in parks, under bridges, in alleyways, and other hard-to-reach locations. 

SMP also reaches out to individuals experiencing homelessness where they engage with community organizations, such as Grace Lutheran Church and on the Human Services Campus. SMP’s intention is not to recreate the services that community agencies across Phoenix already provide. Rather, our goal is to assess social determinants of health and connect individuals experiencing homelessness to these agencies, providing a long-term solution for their needs and hopefully, helping them become one step closer to finding permanent housing.  

SMP is comprised of student volunteers and preceptors representing a variety of professions including medicine, nursing, physician assistant, social work, business, public health, pharmacy, optometry, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and psychiatry/psychology. Interprofessionalism in SMP enables the provision of holistic care to each patient and creates a unique learning environment in which students and preceptors from different professions can learn from one another. Student volunteers have the opportunity to participate in the care of vulnerable and underserved populations, enabling them to practice skills learned in the classroom and apply these skills to a real-world setting. After volunteering with SMP, we hope that students are inspired to care for underserved populations as future health care providers.

Homelessness in Phoenix, Arizona

Phoenix, AZ is the 5th largest city in the United States, with an estimated population of 1.6 million. According to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, nearly 9,865 people are experiencing homelessness on a given night in the state of Arizona. That is about 14 homeless persons per 10,000 people in the general population. In Phoenix alone, there are roughly 6,614 individuals experiencing homelessness.

Sheltered vs. Unsheltered Individuals Experiencing Homelessness in Maricopa County

2019 Point-in-Time (PIT) Count Report Maricopa Regional Continuum of Care

Special Populations

2019 Point-in-Time (PIT) Count Report Maricopa Regional Continuum of Care

From 2014 to 2019, the number of families has decreased by 43%. Families are defined in this report as households with at least one adult and one child. Almost all families identified from the PIT Count were in either emergency shelter or transitional housing, with only one unsheltered family reported in 2019. Families may be hard for volunteers to identify during the PIT Count due to tendencies to stay in vehicles or other hidden locations. This year’s PIT Count took place on a particularly cold night, and it is possible that families were more likely to seek shelter that night.
Youth ages 18-24 are considered a vulnerable population, and the number has increased in the past few years. Efforts to specifically count the population of unaccompanied youth experiencing homelessness did not start until 2015. Youth are also a challenging subpopulation to identify during the PIT Count. To account for this, homeless youth service providers provided input on PIT Count strategies, including hosting magnet events at resource centers specifically for this subpopulation.
The number of veterans experiencing homelessness has increased. After a slight decrease in 2018, the number of veterans identified during the PIT Count increased again in 2019. It is important to note that veteran status is self-reported for the PIT Count.
The number of people who meet the chronic homelessness definition has significantly increased over the years. From 2014 to 2019, the total number of chronically homeless has increased by 139%. Interestingly in the past two years, the chronic unsheltered number has decreased while the chronic sheltered number has increased. The HUD definition of chronic homelessness is: (1) a person who lives in a place not meant for human habitation, Safe Haven, or Emergency Shelter, (2) has a disability, and (3) has been homeless continuously for one year OR four or more times homeless in the last three years, where the combined length of time homeless is at least 12 months. When a head of household meets this definition, all household members are counted as chronically homeless

Street Med Phoenix: The Solution

Our Mission

Our mission is to ensure access to quality healthcare for Phoenix’s homeless population living and sleeping on the streets. 

Our Vision

Our vision is to walk side-by-side with and advocate for homeless individuals in the Phoenix Metro area as they strive to overcome personal obstacles and societal stigmas in the pursuit of happiness, well-being, and a home.

Our Goals

1. Reduce the Phoenix homeless population’s reliance on Emergency Departments for health care by linking them with a primary medical home

2. Connect individuals experiencing homelessness in the Phoenix Metro area with existing community agencies to meet their long-term needs

3.) Expand the current knowledge base of the needs and health concerns of Phoenix’s homeless population

4.) Decrease the prevalence of homelessness in the Phoenix Metro area

Our Values

Our values underpin street medicine culture. They describe the professional behaviors we expect from our student volunteers, faculty and collaborators. These values are an integral part of the framework we use to recruit leaders who will provide humanistic care to each individual experiencing homelessness we serve in our community. 

Empathy

Respect

Trust

Kindness

Collaboration

Advocacy 

We Thank ALL Our Supplies Donors!

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33

# of Outreach Events

145

# of Volunteers

1305

# of Volunteer Hours

300

# of Lives Touched

Street Medicine Phoenix Leadership

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Jeff Hanna, MPH, MSc

Co-Founder

Justin Zeien, MPH, MS3

Co-Founder

Mandy Kaur, MS3

Jasper Puracan, MS3

Street Medicine Phoenix Preceptorship

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Dr. J. Hartmark-Hill, Dr. J. Kenny & Dr. S. Kaib

Street Medicine Phoenix is unique in that it integrates providers from various professions such as medicine, nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy, pharmacy, social work, and optometry. These preceptors come from academic institutions across Arizona including The University of Arizona, Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, and Midwestern University. Preceptors are responsible for overseeing Street Runs and applying their clinical knowledge in support of SMP’s mission. Our preceptors guide student volunteers through the nuances of patient care and provide invaluable teaching. Preceptors have the unique opportunity to mentor the next generation of health care providers and lead interprofessional teams of students who will provide care to vulnerable populations in the future.

Jennifer Hartmark-Hill, MD

Medical Director

Dr. Hartmark-Hill is a Mayo Clinic-trained family medicine physician who works as full-time faculty at The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix. She sees patients at the Cholla Clinic (a Federally Qualified Health Center). She also serves as the Medical Director for Street Medicine Phoenix and SHOW Community Health Initiative.

If you are a healthcare provider and wish to join the Street Medicine Phoenix team, please contact Dr. Jennifer Hartmark-Hill. 

Let's Talk!

jhartmarkhill@email.arizona.edu

Co-Founders & Medical Director of Street Med Phx

  • Jennifer Hartmark-Hill, MD Specialty: Family Medicine
  • Suzan Kaib, MD Specialty: Family Medicine
  • Jonathan Cartsonis, MD Specialty: Family Medicine
  • John Kenny, MD Specialty: Psychiatry
  • Vicki Copeland, MD Specialty: Family Medicine
  • Syamala Darira, MD Specialty: Internal Medicine
  • Natasha Bhuyan, MD Specialty: Family Medicine
  • Dennis Friedman, MD Specialty: Psychiatry
  • Liz Harrell, PMHNP
  • Bonnie Ervin, MSW 
  • Sue Dahl Popolizio, OTR/L 
  • Michelle Garrison, DNP 
  • Kim Day, DNP 
  • Beth Walker, RN 
  • Cat Costello, DPT
  • Gretchen Bachman, OTD, OTR/L 
  • Pam Bosch, DPT
  • Naveed Shan, DPT