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Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Introduction to Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS)

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Presentation on theme: "Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Introduction to Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Introduction to Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS)

2 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 2 Overview What is HMIS? Benefits of HMIS Pros and Cons of HMIS History of HMIS HMIS is a Tool, Not the Goal Sample Local HMIS Initiatives

3 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 3 What is HMIS? Homeless Management Information System A Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) is a computerized data collection tool specifically designed to capture client-level, system-wide information over time on the characteristics and services needs of men, women, and children experiencing homelessness. HMISs are typically web-based software applications that local homeless communities implement to enter and share client-level data across agencies about homeless persons served in shelters or other homeless service agencies. HMIS allows the aggregation of client-level data across homeless service agencies to generate unduplicated counts and service patterns of clients served.

4 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 4 What is HMIS? Homeless Management Information System An HMIS is either a vendor developed or a communitys locally developed software system that records and stores information on homeless clients served HUDs National Data and Technical Standards establish baseline standards for participation, data collection, privacy and security Implementation of HMIS is a requirement for receipt of Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) McKinney-Vento funding Please Review HMIS Terms and Acronyms Handout

5 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 5 What is HMIS? Homeless Management Information System HMIS records and stores: – Client Intake Demographics Basic assessment of needs Bed utilization – Service Tracking Services delivered by a provider Services received by clients Gaps in the homeless services in a community.

6 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 6 What is HMIS? Homeless Management Information System Case Management – Ability to plan, schedule, and follow-up on delivery of services – Ability to track changes in clients over time – Ability to monitor and measure performance goals and outcomes Information and Referral (I & R) – Database of available resources – Online referrals – Electronic submission of applications for benefits and eligibility determination.

7 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 7 Triangle of Benefits of HMIS Homeless Service Providers CoC Coordinators, Policy Makers, Government Officials Homeless Men Women and Children

8 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 8 Benefits for Homeless Men, Women, and Children Decrease in duplicate intakes and assessments Streamlined referrals Coordinated case management Mainstream benefit eligibility and/or determination Professional development through involvement in planning process

9 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 9 Benefits for Homeless Service Providers Improve agency effectiveness through tracking client outcomes Coordinate services, internally among agency programs, and externally with other providers Prepare financial and programmatic reports for funders, boards, and other stakeholders Inform program design decisions

10 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 10 Benefits for Community Coordinators, Policy Makers, and Government Officials Increase the understanding of the local extent and scope of homelessness Facilitate an unduplicated count of persons experiencing homelessness Identify service gaps (i.e. are the services available meeting the needs of clients) Inform systems design and policy decisions Develop a forum for addressing community-wide issues

11 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 11 Pros and Cons of HMIS vs. Traditional Methods Method: Point in Time Counts – Count everyone who is homeless on one night – Pro: Unduplicated number of people on the street or in shelter in one night, includes those not served by homeless programs – Con: No information on whether those people were homeless for one night or all year. Under-represents those that move in and out of the system throughout a time period. Why is HMIS a better alternative than point in time counts or aggregate service provider reports for gathering community- wide information on homelessness?

12 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 12 Pros and Cons of HMIS vs. Traditional Methods Method: Summation of aggregate reports from funded agencies – Each program generates aggregate data about persons served over a time period (i.e. a year) – Pro: Broader information about population served throughout all programs – Con: Duplicated counts, the same people are counted by multiple programs; limited understanding of patterns of service use or total population size.

13 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 13 Why HMIS Over Other Methods? Summary of Approaches Method Generates Unduplicated Counts Patterns of Entering and Exiting Homelessness In-Depth Information on Clients and Needs One Night CountYesNo Service Provider Reports No Yes HMISYes

14 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 14 History of HMIS 1980 – early 1990s: Big cities with large homeless populations pioneer the use of computer-based tracking systems 2001: Congress directs HUD to develop an unduplicated count of the homeless; HUD requires all McKinney-Vento funded homeless grantees to implement HMIS 2004: Final HMIS Data and Technical Standards are published 2005: First National Annual Homeless Assessment Report

15 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 15 HMIS Congressional Directive In 2001, Congress directed HUD on the need for data and analysis on the extent of homelessness and the effectiveness of the McKinney-Vento Act Programs including: – Developing unduplicated counts of clients served at the local level; – Analyzing patterns of use of people entering and exiting the homeless assistance system; and – Evaluating the effectiveness of these systems.

16 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 16 HMIS Data and Technical Standards Final Notice HMIS Data and Technical Standards Final Notice was published by HUD in Theses data standards were last updated in March of Sets the expectation for participation and data collection for providers of homeless services Defines universal and program-specific data elements Prioritizes HMIS implementation by program type Sets baseline privacy and security requirements

17 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 17 HMIS is a Tool, Not the Goal What questions can HMIS help to answer: – At the local level? – At the national level? How are communities implementing HMIS at the local level? – Background – Uses of Data

18 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 18 What Questions Can HMIS Answer for Local Communities? How many people are homeless on the streets and in the service system? How many are chronically or episodically homeless? What are the characteristics and service needs of those served? Which programs are most effective at reducing and ending homelessness?

19 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 19 What Questions Can HMIS Answer for the Nation? How many people are homeless in the United States? Who is homeless? Where do people receive shelter and services and where did they live before homelessness? What are the patterns of homeless residential program use? What is the nations capacity for housing homeless people and how much is utilized?

20 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 20 HMIS Will Inform the Development of HUDs Annual Homeless Assessment Report What is the AHAR? – It is an annual report to Congress about the number and characteristics of people who use homeless residential services and their patterns of use. – The AHAR is HUDs initial strategy to respond to the Congressional Directive. – The first AHAR will include basic demographic and intake/exit data on people who used emergency shelters and transitional housing during 2005.

21 Prepared by Abt Associates for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 21 Additional Information About HMIS is Available HMIS Related Info: – – HMIS Data and Technical Standards Final Notice: – %20Data%20Standards-Revised%20_3.pdf %20Data%20Standards-Revised%20_3.pdf


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