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POSITIVE SPACES, HEALTHY PLACES: REGIONAL ANALYSES TO PUT RESEARCH INTO ACTION
J Koornstra1, R Tucker2, S Greene3, M Sobota4, L Monette3, D Guenter5, S Byers5, J Dunn3, S Hwang3, SB Rourke3
1Ottawa, ON; 2Pender Island, BC; 3Toronto, ON; 4Thunder Bay, ON; 5Hamilton, ON
Background And Methods: This is the first longitudinal CBR initiative in Canada to examine housing status and stability and its relationship to health outcomes and health-related quality of life in the context of HIV. Surveys with 605 people with HIV from across Ontario were collected across one year. The current study focuses on our baseline regional analyses of housing and health outcomes across 8 regions in Ontario.
Results: Housing Opportunities and Supports: (a) Only 15% of sample with housing had support services, which when available, are generally accessible only in greater Toronto area (GTA), Ottawa and Hamilton; (b) rent geared to income, which varies by geography, available to only 43%; Housing Vulnerability and Risk: (a) 21% are at significant financial risk for losing their housing; these rates vary significantly by region; (b) 52% face significant anxiety and worry about being forced out of their homes (rate similar across province); (c) 35% of sample experienced discrimination when trying to get housing; (d) 1 out of 4 people do not feel that they belong in their neighbourhood; Housing Instability: (a) Overall 23% moved in past year; 57% moved twice or more; (b) Moving in past year has significant effect (and stepwise increases with more moves) on both physical and mental health-related quality of life. Determinants of Health Putting People with HIV More at Risk: (a) income very low for all across province; (b) 54% across province exceed screening threshold for depression; (c) over 20% of sample is dissatisfied with access to health and social services (highest rate seen northern, GTA and Kingston areas); (e) significant differences seen in the rate of persons in study who accessed family MD in past 3 months (e.g., 3-4 out of 10 in Thunder Bay and in Southwest region did not access an MD).
Influencing Policy and Practice: Housing Solutions (1) increase availability of housing opportunities across full range of housing in broader housing sector; (2) increase availability of appropriate housing supports leading to improvements in 'getting and keeping' housing; (3) improve responsiveness and understanding of non-HIV housing service providers; (4) increase collaboration and partnerships to support capacity building; and (5) have government and other decision-makers undertake more focused housing policy development, advocacy and research initiatives.