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Call for Proposals Closed

The National Health Care for the Homeless Council welcomed proposals to provide both introductory and advanced educational content at the annual conference for clinicians, patients, researchers, administrators, advocates, consumers, and policy makers working at the intersection of health care, homelessness, and housing.

Thank you to everyone who submitted a proposal! Review Committee decisions will be communicated in December 2019.

Conference Theme

Proposals should address an aspect of the conference theme “EQuality = Equity + Quality.” “Equity” refers to health equity, the idea that everyone should have a fair opportunity to attain their full health potential and that no one should be disadvantaged from achieving this potential. “Quality” characterizes approaches that optimize outcomes and the experience of care for patients and providers alike.

Our theme acknowledges that quality care must be equitable. Health equity is vital to the delivery of coordinated, comprehensive health care and is needed to successfully end homelessness.

We especially seek proposals that highlight marginalized subpopulations and their experiences, such as rural communities, people of color, LGBTQ+ people, older adults, children, youth, or Veterans. Proposals should highlight equitable health services and promote cultural humility and trauma-informed principles.

Proposals may also address policy implications, such as policies affecting healthcare and housing, and effective grassroots movements that can mobilize entire communities to create positive change for the people they serve.

Examples that cohere with this theme include, but are not limited to:

  • Quality measurement methods, structures, and systems
  • Health care delivery adaptations to the experience of homelessness
  • Quality assessment, Quality Improvement (QI) and Quality Assurance (QA) initiatives
  • Health inequality and disparities
  • Local and state policy initiatives aimed to improve quality of care
  • Effective use of cost-benefit analyses
  • Ways to promote culturally appropriate care, health literacy, and numeracy
  • Developing, conducting, and evaluating health-related quality of life research
  • Peer support to improve quality of life
  • Promoting equity, diversity, and the inclusion of patients and staff, of different races, ages, ethnicities, languages, gender identities and expressions, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, or worldview
  • Ways to demonstrate the value and impact of the Health Care for the Homeless model to potential stakeholders
  • How to reduce social barriers and stigmas to increase access to care and other basic needs
  • Trauma-informed care
  • Best practices in creating and sustaining equitable, diverse, and inclusive organizations
  • Developing, conducting, and evaluating health-related, community-engaged research focused on promoting health equity
  • Systems collaborations
  • Advancing public policies that expand access to comprehensive health care, addresses structural racism, promote affordable/supportive housing, reduce barriers to services, or other key elements to address social injustices that can prevent and end homelessness

Conference Tracks

Each proposal should address one of the four conference tracks: (1) Direct Care, (2) Policy and Advocacy, (3) Program Operations and Innovation, and (4) Evidence and Evaluation

Direct Care Track

Sessions in the Direct Care track should enhance the knowledge and skills of care providers in order to improve the health and quality of life of people experiencing homelessness. We encourage submissions by and for clinicians of any discicipline, and sessions may reflect an interdisciplinary approach to confront the multiple and complex problems associated with homelessness and a holistic manner of patient care.

We are particularly interested in proposals addressing:

  1. Behavioral health care, including substance use disorder
  2. Chronic disease management (e.g. diabetes)
  3. Infectious diseases
  4. Oral health care
  5. Care for children and families
  6. Care for aging adults
  7. Multiple comorbidities
  8. Precision medicine
  9. Social determinants of health
  10. Cultural humility
  11. Outreach and street medicine

Policy & Advocacy

The Policy & Advocacy track is intended to highlight the efforts of the HCH community to create better public policy and achieve solutions to poverty and homelessness. This track is distinct from the Program Operations and Innovation track in that it focuses on actions and partnerships external to direct-service organizations.

We are particularly interested in proposals for sessions that:

  1. Address systemic causes of poverty, inequity, and homelessness
  2. Address current events and/or policy issues that are widespread and significant within the HCH field
  3. Speak to experiences, outcomes, and constructive solutions (rather than simply advancing theory)
  4. Are applicable to many states and localities
  5. Promote a human rights approach to housing and health care
  6. Address disparities based on gender, income, race/ethnicity, housing status, or other social determinants of health
  7. Relate to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, innovative uses of Medicaid or other funding streams, or advances in delivery system design
  8. Share experiences with unique or evolving partnerships (e.g., justice community, hospitals/insurers, public agencies, Continuum of Care, etc.)
  9. Pursue a single-payer approach to health care financing
  10. Promote social justice and non-violence/prevention of violence as an approach to problem resolution

Program Operations & Innovation

The goal for workshops in this track is to enhance the knowledge and skills of decision-makers at direct-service organizations. Workshops should feature best practices and innovations in tailoring programs to meet the needs of people experiencing homelessness and assist them into stable housing. This track principally targets program managers and senior staff.

We are particularly interested in proposals for sessions addressing:

  1. Effective care transitions
  2. Ways to promote culturally appropriate care
  3. Balancing productivity and quality
  4. Financing and fundraising
  5. Workforce development, burnout prevention, and staff retention
  6. Innovative organizational structures
  7. Quality Improvement (QI) and Quality Assurance (QA) related to program management
  8. Practice models tailored to the conditions of homelessness
  9. Medical respite care startups and operations
  10. Anti-Racism training in direct-service organizations
  11. Consumer Advisory Boards and meaningful involvement of consumers in governance

Evidence & Evaluation Track

The purpose of the Evidence and Evaluation Track is to provide a venue for homeless health care researchers, clinicians, quality improvement officers, or others in the homeless community to: (1) Demonstrate research or quality improvement projects that are innovative, emerging, promising, or evidence-based that can inform practice, overall population health, or policy efforts to improve the quality of care for individuals who are homeless and (2) describe workflow or research processes and approaches that facilitate quality improvement within health centers or engagement of Health Care for the Homeless health centers to advance knowledge, support data and metrics, and ultimately improving the lives of persons experiencing homelessness. We are especially interested in projects that are led by, or heavily informed by, patient and clinician stakeholders and occur in a clinic setting or setting by which persons experiencing homelessness live.

We are particularly interested in proposals that address the following:


  1. Marginalized homeless subpopulations, such as racial/ethnic minorities or sexual orientation or gender minorities
  2. Research areas of high interest the HCH field, such as chronic disease management, mental health issues, treating patients with multiple chronic conditions, substance abuse, and housing
  3. Interventions designed to improve disease self-management or health care delivery models and systems
  4. Socio-behavioral aspects of homelessness and issues specific to the vulnerabilities related to homelessness
  5. Community engaged, client-centered research methods, like Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR)


  1. Quantitatively or qualitatively address the Evidence continuum (innovative, emerging, evidence, promising practices) as it relates to health center quality improvement or practice transformation
  2. Pragmatic quality improvement projects related to integrating social determinants of health tools and measures, measures for behavioral health integration, risk stratification, interventions or implementation of innovative health care delivery models and systems
  3. Evaluation of health center value or return on investment
  4. Assessment or Evaluation tool development to address health center value, improved health for individuals experiencing homelessness
  5. Describe the current health status of homeless populations (e.g., morbidity and mortality)

Educational Session Formats

To accommodate different learning and teaching styles, proposals may utilize the following formats, described more fully below:

  • 30-Minute Oral Presentations
  • 75-Minute Workshops
  • Poster Presentations

30-Minute Oral Presentations

An oral presentation is a 30-minute presentation that describes a research project, program, best practices, or innovative tool or approach to a topic. Individual submissions will be grouped with another presenter that reflect a common theme. Presenters submitting proposals for this type of session may include slide presentations, brief videos, group exercises, and/or focused discussions on a particular topic.

  • Presenter Maximum: one (1)
  • Registration Discount: one (1) $150 Main Conference registration discount code

75-Minute Workshops

A 75-minute workshop is an oral presentation that provides an in-depth exploration of a program innovation, emerging issue, clinical challenge, or findings from a research project or quality improvement initiative. Presentations may include slide presentations, group exercises, facilitated discussion, and clinical case studies. Attention to administrative and policy aspects of clinical topics is strongly encouraged. Creative formats outside of traditional lecture/Q&A patterns are welcomed.

  • Presenter Maximum: three (3)
  • Registration Discount: up to three (3) $150 Main Conference registration discount codes

Poster Presentations

Posters offer a succinct view of programs and practices, policy issues, or research analysis. Posters will be presented during the Welcome Reception on May 12, 2020, during an official poster and networking reception. Presenters should be with the poster during this scheduled viewing and posters will remain available for viewing throughout the conference during breaks. Specific guidelines for printing the poster will be provided upon acceptance.

  • Presenter Maximum: one (1)
  • Registration Discount: one (1) $150 Main Conference registration discount code will be provided for up to ten (10) posters

Commercial Content

The educational content of this event is eligible for Continuing Medical Education Level 1 credits (applicable for most licensed health professionals) through the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. As such, no demonstration or endorsement of commercial products is permissible in educational sessions.

Proposal Review Process

Reviewers will be volunteers from the National HCH Council’s committees. They will score all proposals according to criteria established for each track. Review criteria are listed below:

  1. “Equity”: Sessions should be reflective of “Equity” as described in the Conference Theme.
  2. “Quality”: Sessions should be reflective of “Quality” as described in the Conference Theme.
  3. Relevance: Sessions should address significant, current issues affecting HCH consumers, practice, Medical Respite programs, and/or public policy.
  4. Evidence: For clarity, session proposals should clearly indicate whether practices to be discussed are evidence-based, promising, or innovative.
  5. Replicability: Sessions should describe activities/approaches that can be replicated in other HCH, medical respite, supportive housing, or homeless service provider settings.
  6. Policy Impact: Sessions should identify and address a topic’s implications for public policy and agency policies.
  7. Clarity: Overall, proposals should be well structured, coherent, and easy to understand.
  8. Format: Proposal should reflect the expectations of the submitted session format (workshop, oral presentation, poster)

The review process is blinded; presenter information, affiliations, and identifying information will not be shared with reviewers. Please refrain from including identifying information in the Proposal Summary and Description.

The Council reserves the right to recommend changes in the track or focus/content of a proposed educational session or may combine similar proposals into one session. On your submission, you will be asked to indicate your willingness to combine. Proposers will be consulted in such cases.

Please submit your proposal in one session format and track only. The Council maintains a no-duplication policy with regards to submissions. If a duplicated submission is found in more than one session format or more than one track, the Council reserves the right to withdraw both submissions from review.


Consumer Participation

The Council recognizes and supports the critical role people with the lived experience of homelessness play in defining, measuring, and working together for EQuality. We strongly encourage proposals that meaningfully include consumers in the development of educational content and/or the delivery of the presentation. Council staff and members are available to assist consumers in developing proposals. For more information, please contact Consumer Advocate, Katherine Cavanaugh.

We encourage agencies to support the travel costs of consumer presenters whose workshops are accepted. Consumer presenters are prioritized for a limited number of consumer subsidies, which cover registration, meals, lodging, and limited travel assistance. These subsidies will open in January 2019, for more information contact Consumer Advocate, Katherine Cavanaugh.


Diversity and Inclusion

The Council is committed to increasing representation of oppressed communities in our conference. Especially because racism and homophobia are principal drivers of homelessness, and people of color and LGBTQ+ people are drastically overrepresented, it is paramount that our conference reflect the people we serve. As such, the proposal submission process requests demographic information for all speakers/panelists. We especially invite submissions from people who identify with marginalized groups.

Registration Rates for Presenters

If your proposal is accepted, only conference registration codes will be provided:

  • Workshops: $150 Main Conference discount for up to THREE (3) presenters
  • Oral Presentations and Poster: $150 Main Conference discount for ONE (1) presenter

The Council is not responsible for travel, hotel accommodations, and meals not provided at the conference. Speaker fees are not available.

Proposal Submission Process

The call for proposals closed October 27, 2019

Review Committee decisions will be communicated in December 2019.

If you have any questions about the proposal and review processes, please email Cecilia Teichert, Training Coordinator at or call (615) 226-2292 ext. 241.


This program is supported by the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $1,625,741, with 21.25 percent financed with non-governmental sources. The contents are those of the presenters and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government. For more information, please visit

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This website is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $1,967,147 with 20 percent financed with non-governmental sources. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government. For more information, please visit

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