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Get the latest news from the Respite Care Providers' Network!

Respite News

A Quarterly Newsletter for Members of the Respite Care Providers' Network
January 26, 2023

Letter to Members

mugshot of Brady Seymore
Happy New Year, RCPN Members!  
My name is Brady Seymore and I’m the Instructional Design Manager for the National Health Care for the Homeless Council. Come April, I will have held this position for two years, after coming from 10 years in public education. The career change has been an adjustment, but more than that, it has been educational and eye-opening. My position rests on the Clinical and Quality Improvement Team, but I have the pleasure of working across our entire organization. In my exposure and adjustment to the Health Care for the Homeless community, NIMRC is one of the teams I am most thankful for. From my first day on staff, they have guided me in learning about the important, person-centered work done by medical respite providers. I have just begun to skim the surface of all you do. I am already awed, deeply appreciative, and ready to continue learning.
In my time working with NIMRC, I have had the honor of helping create learning experiences based around the Standards for Medical Respite Care developed in 2021. I have enjoyed the opportunity to learn about Medical Respite at a foundational level while creating courses that will help standardize the practice to help those who wish to, or are already engaging with, this work. Currently, we have developed 6 asynchronous course offerings covering a wide range of topics including: trauma-informed care; harm reduction; discharge planning and processes; the importance of data usage in medical respite; relationships with managed care organizations; and the role of community health workers, case managers, and peers in the respite setting. These courses each present a different learning opportunity for our audience but contain one common goal: improving the great work respite care providers are already doing.  
The most exciting part about working with NIMRC is that the work is just beginning. In the coming weeks we will be releasing two additional courses. The first is centered around addressing behavioral health conditions in a medical respite setting. The second will explore how respite programs can develop and maintain impactful relationships with hospitals. I am looking forward to building out both learning experiences, but more than that, I am looking forward to creating useful resources that will positively impact the medical respite community.    
We are approaching the end of this first round of courses, but I look forward to continuing to work closely with NIMRC and the RCPN to make this crazy world we live in vastly more equitable than we found it.  
In admiration,  
Brady Seymore, M. Ed. 

Instructional De
sign Manager 

Save the Date

All-Member Meeting

The first RCPN All Member Meeting of 2023 will be held Feb. 22 at 1 p.m. CST. All Member Meetings provide an opportunity to join together with other medical respite program providers and administrators to discuss key issues affecting medical respite care. We will provide updates on NIMRC, resource, and policy issues. This will be followed by a large group discussion on current issues affecting the field, where attendees have the opportunity to connect with each other, share experiences, and learn insights from other programs. 

First Coffee Chat of the Year
Join us on March 8 at 1 p.m. CST for our first Coffee Chat of the new year. Our focus for this discussion will be local-government funded (e.g., county funding) or local government-based (e.g., county based) medical respite programs and the unique challenges and opportunities associated with operating such programs. Please come to this interactive Coffee Chat with any questions for the group and be prepared to share lessons learned from your own work!

NIMRC Resource Highlights

Issue Brief: Medicaid Reimbursement Principles
for Medical Respite Care
As communities across the country continue to adopt effective approaches to homelessness, state Medicaid agencies and managed care plans are increasingly turning to medical respite care programs to provide post-acute care to a vulnerable, high-need population. There are multiple financing options for medical respite care, and some states and managed care plans have already established reimbursements for these services. Based on the experiences from these partnerships, and as more states and plans consider reimbursing for medical respite services, there are a number of issues to consider when setting parameters for funding. This issue brief describes a set of principles for Medicaid reimbursement that states and health care plans can use in their collaborations with medical respite care programs. 
Issue Brief: Status of State-Level Medicaid Benefits
for Medical Respite Care
Medical respite care programs are rapidly growing in response to a rising need for people experiencing homelessness to have access to post-acute care in a safe, stable environment. While there are numerous financing strategies that work for medical respite programs, more state Medicaid plans and managed care organizations (MCOs) are paying for services through Medicaid as a way of creating more consistent and sustainable reimbursements. Further, some states are actively moving to add reimbursements for medical respite care as a statewide benefit. This issue brief is intended to provide a current snapshot of state-level Medicaid activity related to medical respite care. 
Guide: Updated Models of Medical Respite Care 
The Models of Medical Respite Care is a guide to describe the structures of medical respite programs, including the types and intensity of clinical, case management, and care coordination services that can been expected within the medical respite setting. This resource, initially published in 2022, has been updated to reflect the feedback of the Respite Care Providers Network and more comprehensively describes care coordination services and their essential role in medical respite. The updated Models of Care is available from the NIMRC website here.  
New Medical Respite Care Online Courses now available  
NIMRC continues to add new resources to our catalog of online courses. These courses are intended for medical respite program staff, including those who provide direct services and serve in administrative/leadership positions. Since August, we have added three additional courses which include: 
  • Relationships with Managed Care Organizations 
  • Trauma Informed Care in Medical Respite Settings 
  • The Role of Case Managers, Community Health Workers, and Peers in Medical Respite Care 
All online courses can be found here. Users will need to create a log-in to be able to access the courses, and those who complete courses will receive a certificate of completion.  
Guide: Elements of a Care Plan in Medical Respite Settings 
People experiencing homelessness (PEH) typically present in medical respite care settings with complex and interconnected medical, social, and behavioral health needs. Effectively meeting these needs and providing whole-person care necessitates comprehensive and responsive care planning, from admission through discharge and beyond.  
NIMRC’s new resource, Elements of a Care Plan in Medical Respite Settings, is intended to (1) provide a reference-point and template to assist programs in developing their own care planning tools that are appropriate to their unique contexts; and (2) help community stakeholders interested in learning more about medical respite to understand the scope and complexity of the services provided within programs. 
This resource can be found here in the Medical Respite Care Toolkit on the NIMRC website, and a “fillable” version of the template can be accessed here. 

Policy Updates

The U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) released ALL IN: The Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness, outlining a blueprint for a future where no one experiences homelessness, and everyone has a safe, stable, accessible, and affordable home. The National Health Care for the Homeless Council (NHCHC) appreciates the comprehensive approach to this plan and supports the Biden-Harris Administration’s goal to reduce the number of people experiencing homelessness by 25% by January 2025. The plan emphasizes the importance of elevating medical respite care as a specific strategy to meet the needs of people who need recuperative care after hospital discharge. USICH also released a webinar and slides discussing the plan, data points that supported its development, and the vision for the future. 

Respite Kudos & Accomplishments

  • Dr. Audrey Kuang, Central Health’s director of high-risk populations, was named Humanitarian of the Year by the Travis County Medical Society (TCMS) at the group’s annual awards dinner. Dr. Kuang joined Central Health in 2022 and was among the first physicians hired by the hospital district to provide direct care to patients, specializing in care for Travis County’s unhoused population.   
  • A recent feature on how a converted inn, known as the Complex Care Shelter, became Anchorage’s first of its kind. Anchorage is a community participating in Built for Zero, a national initiative of communities dedicated to measurably and equitably ending homelessness and a participant in its health care and homelessness pilot with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. The facility came to life 7 months after conception and is operating at full capacity 6 months after opening. 
  • The National Health Care for the Homeless Council (NHCHC) will bring new behavioral health services into medical respite programs across three states thanks to a three-year, $2.9 million grant awarded by the United Health Foundation, the philanthropic foundation of UnitedHealth Group. Each of the following organizations will receive more than $500,000 in funding:
    — Bob Tavani House for Medical Respite, Duluth, Minn.
    — Haywood Street Congregation, Asheville, N.C.
    — Hennepin County Health Care for the Homeless, Minneapolis
    — Catholic Charities of Central Florida, Inc., Orlando, Fla. 
    Read the full article here. 

Activities & Opportunities

2023 Willie J. Mackey National Medical Respite Award

Nominations for the Wille J. Mackey Award are open. This award is named in honor of the late Willie J. Mackey, a dedicated member of the RCPN Steering Committee and a fierce advocate for medical respite care. This award recognizes an individual who has made a profound impact on their community through the delivery or advancement of medical respite care.
The award recipient will receive a full scholarship to the 2023 National Health Care for the Homeless Conference & Policy Symposium including travel, lodging, and conference registration. 
Click here to nominate. Nominations close March 8 at 11:59 p.m. PST. 

Nominations open for RCPN Steering Committee  
RCPN Steering Committee nominations are now open. The RCPN Steering Committee meets monthly via Zoom, in-person two times per year, and members are elected to serve a three-year term The Steering Committee is committed to reflecting the diversity of the medical respite care field in its composition, including diversity of discipline, race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, geography, and lived experience of homelessness. We encourage applications from hands-on medical respite providers, administrators, and funders. We are especially interested in consumer representatives. 
Please consider nominating yourself, a colleague, or program participant by filling out this form. Nominations close March 8, 2023, at 11:59 p.m. PST.

Register Now: 2023 Health Care for the Homeless Conference & Policy Symposium in Baltimore

Registration is now open
for the 2023 National Health Care for the Homeless Conference & Policy Symposium! This year’s conference will be held May 15-18 in Baltimore. For the first time ever, this year’s conference will include a Medical Respite Care workshop track. Additionally, there will be a full-day pre-conference institute held May 15 that will focus on planning and developing a medical respite program. For those in the development or piloting phase of medical respite, we hope you will join us for the pre-conference institute. For our more seasoned medical respite providers, we’ve curated a Medical Respite Workshop track that addresses a broad range of complex topics including financing, building partnerships, harm reduction, connections to housing, and engaging with clients post-medical respite care. We look forward to seeing you in May! 

Respite on the Road

As part of a Council collaboration with the California Health Care Foundation (CHCF), NIMRC team member Caitlin had the opportunity to visit three medical respite programs: The Gathering Inn (Roseville, Calif.), Wellspace Health (Sacramento, Calif.), and Shasta Community HOPE Medical Respite (Redding, Calif.). 
Top left: Caitlin with Ron Arneson of the Gathering Inn. Top right: Debbie Harding, Lesha Schaefer, Caitlin, Paul Tunison, and Samantha Breton in the main entry of Shasta Community Hope. Bottom left: The clinic space at Shasta. Bottom right: The common area at Shasta. 

Respite in the News

The awareness of medical respite care and medical respite programs across communities has grown! Many of our respite programs have been featured in the news, in addition to articles that identify medical respite care as a key intervention for people experiencing homelessness.
  • New York City’s Strategy to Good Health, ‘Housing for Health’ Initiative Will Focus on Four Strategic Areas: Navigation Services, Medical Respite Beds, Affordable Housing on Hospital Property, and Social Service Support for Patients in Permanent Housing. 
  • Medical respite care helps Michigan’s most vulnerable recuperate after hospitalization. 
  • Housing as Health: How Sojourner House is Paving the Way for Medical Respite Care. 
  • Anchorage's medical respite program is a key piece of addressing frostbite in those experiencing homelessness. 
  • Haywood Street receives $500,000 in grants for medical respite care. 
  • The Gathering Inn in Roseville, Calif., partnered with Kaiser Permanente to help the unhoused into stable housing. 
  • Housing Matters receives grant from Kaiser to support medical respite care services. 
  • The Gateway received a 3-million-dollar funding commitment to provide a new center for emergency overnight beds with wrap-around services such as case management, a 24/7 receiving area for first responders, medical sobering, and medical respite. 
If you have a news story recognizing a medical respite/recuperative care program, please share it with us by emailing Samantha at

Respite Care Providers' Network Information

  • If you are not already a member, please join the Respite Care Providers Network (RCPN). The mission of RCPN is to improve the health status of individuals who are homeless by supporting programs that provide medical respite and related services. Follow this link for more information and to join the RCPN.
  • Is your medical respite program profile in the NIMRC directory up to date? Complete this program profile form to update your information and view the directory here.
  • Does your program need technical assistance? Please contact Julia, Caitlin, Stephen, or Christa to request a TA meeting to help address your program’s needs!
  • Additional resources for medical respite/recuperative care can be found at
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