Orange County Allocates $33 Million to Whole Person Care Program

On Tuesday, the Orange County Board of Supervisors approved an additional $9.6 million dollars in funding for the Whole Person Care (WPC) pilot program. WPC is aimed at delivering quality medical treatment and services to those experiencing homelessness. Upon approval by the California Department of Heath Care Services the total amount being allocated for WPC over the next 5 years will exceed $33 million dollars. 

"Whole Person Care is part of the County providing a helping hand to our homeless," said Supervisor Andrew Do. 

Part of the key infrastructure included in the program is WPC Connect. This system will alert the County’s community partners when a patient experiencing homelessness enters an emergency room so they can connect the individual to recuperative care or other supportive services. 

The additional funding will help homeless persons living in the Courtyard who need on-going medical care. They will be referred to recuperative care providers who will provide beds, meals, and the necessary medical treatment such as wound care and behavioral health treatment. Currently, after homeless persons receive care they are discharged from the hospital and return to the street, where recuperation is difficult. 

Funding will also allow four additional community health clinics to add homeless outreach teams and coordination services. 

"More outreach and recuperative care will make a difference in the lives of our homeless who are recovering from medical treatment," said Supervisor Andrew Do. 

The Board of Supervisors approved the original round-one application for funding in June 2016, pledging to allocate $23.5 million dollars over the course of five years from Mental Health Services Act dollars, tobacco-settlement funds, and Federal matching funds. With the additional $10 million from round-two grant funding, the total amount being allocated to WPC will exceed $33 million. 

This past year Orange County Supervisor Andrew Do spearheaded the opening of the Courtyard Transitional Center and fast-tracking of the Kraemer Shelter. This anticipated funding will further the County's ability to provide shelter, healthcare, and other services to those experiencing homelessness.