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End-of-Life Care


Adapted Clinical Guidelines

Adapting Your Practice: Recommendations for End-of-Life Care for People Experiencing Homelessness (2018) | This document is part of the network’s series of practice adaptations developed by clinicians working in HCH projects.

In Focus: A Quarterly Research Review

Advance Care Planning for Individuals Experiencing Homelessness (2016) | By 2050, an estimated 95,000 older adults will be without homes, and they will confront high disease and mortality rates. Advance care planning (ACP) can play a critical role for this population in preventing unnecessary suffering and supporting individuals’ preferences for palliative and end-of-life care. This literature review examines that subject, shedding light on current aging, disease, and mortality trends of people without homes, exploring their concerns about death and preferences for advanced care, and noting implications for policy and practice to better meet the needs of individuals experiencing homelessness.

Healing Hands Issues

Patient-Centered Care: Case Studies on End of Life (2018) | People without homes experience complex health needs that become increasingly difficult to manage when diagnosed with terminal illnesses. Caregivers must implement patient-centered palliative care methods and strategies that ensure the patient is at the center of the treatment process and are sensitive to relieving suffering and improving quality of life. This issue of Healing Hands presents five case studies that highlight issues and challenges that clinicians may face in providing end of life care to this population.

HCH Clinicians Can Help Homeless People Die with Dignity (2004) | Death is ever present among homeless people and the providers who treat them. People who are homeless may die unexpectedly—often violently—or they may be seriously ill but not have access to sophisticated hospice and palliative care programs. However, some innovative programs provide compassionate end-of-life care to homeless and other underserved people, and there are some simple things that HCH providers can do to help their clients think about their preferences for end-of-life treatment. These and other topics related to end-of-life care are explored in the articles included in this issue of Healing Hands.

NHCHC Media Experts: COVID-19

To request an interview with a National Health Care for the Homeless Council staff or community member, contact Terri Woodmore, Communications Manager.

Council Staff

Hugo Aguas, MA

Research Associate

Hugo works with the research team to research health outcomes using data driven methodologies, Hugo collaborates with other community health partners throughout the country to develop educational materials pertaining to medical care for those experiencing homelessness. Hugo also disseminates data and provides ease-of-access to community partners throughout the nation, and assists in writing publications and scheduling educational seminars on public health amongst those experiencing homelessness.



Barbara DiPietro, PhD

Senior Director of Policy

Barbara directs the policy and advocacy activities for the National Health Care for the Homeless Council. This includes conducting policy analysis, providing educational materials and presentations to a broad range of policymakers and other stakeholders, coordinating the Council’s policy priorities with national partners, and organizing staff assistance to the Policy Committee and the National Consumer Advisory Board.



Tineciaa Harris MSPH, MS

Clinical and Quality Improvement Manager

Tineciaa works to improve the clinical environment in health centers broadly through education, training, technical assistance, and policy with a focus on quality improvement. Tineciaa operates on the national level in frequent partnership with both federal and non-profit organizations and leads initiatives that seek to improve health outcomes for people experiencing homelessness.



Katie League, LCSW-C

COVID-19 Project Manager (Policy Team)

Katie works with the policy team to support the Council’s efforts surrounding the COVID-19 global pandemic. She works to identify and promote promising practices, common challenges, and key policy issues faced by the HCH community.




Courtney Pladsen, DNP, FNP-BC, RN

Director of Clinical and Quality Improvement

Courtney Pladsen leads initiatives to improve the delivery of primary care, substance use treatment, and mental health care nationally. She directs training and quality improvement initiatives, and contributes to research and policy recommendations on emerging clinical issues affecting people experiencing homelessness.

Bobby Watts

Bobby Watts, MPH, MS

Chief Executive Officer

Bobby Watts has 30 years of experience in administration, direct service, and implementation of homeless health services, beginning as a live-in counselor at the New York City Rescue Mission. He spent most of his career prior to joining the Council at Care for the Homeless, which operates clinics and shelters and conducts policy analysis and advocacy in New York City.

HCH Community Experts


Kristie Hartig, MSN, RN, PHN, CWOCN
Topeka, KS

Erin Ryan, MSW, MPH
Senior Vice President, The Night Ministry
Chicago, IL

Return to main Experts Guide page


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