Yvonne Abraham


“Hey, my babies!”

A small woman, her hair cropped close to her head, her pajamas swimming on her sunken frame, bounded into the airy atrium. She made a beeline for a pair of labs — one blond, one black — so happy to see her that their tails seemed to be wagging them.

“Where’s the reindeer ears?” Rogenia demanded. Last week, the dogs were wearing ears that made them, improbably, even more adorable.

Read More
Elizabeth Cooney


For nearly two dozen General Electric professionals who took classes at Harvard Medical School in November, study was far removed from a typical day at the office. They operated on (simulated) patients, shadowed health professionals serving homeless people, evaluated an ethical dilemma and even grabbed a hula hoop during an activity break.

Read More
Credit: Jesse Costa, WBUR
Allison Bond, Photo: Jesse Costa


Tommy Blais was only 16 when a motorcycle accident left him with a painful broken bone and a dependence on prescription opioids. After his doctor tried to cut the number of pain pills Blais was taking, he found the drugs on the street and eventually turned to sniffing and injecting heroin. Now he’s in recovery, but not before seeing the dangers of illegal drugs.

Read More
Mark Labbe


Physicians, dentists and medical students came together at St. John's Seminary in Brighton to attend this year's annual "White Mass" and to listen to a talk by president of the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, Dr. James O'Connell, Oct. 15.

Sponsored by the Guild of St. Luke of the Archdiocese of Boston, an organization of Catholic physicians, the White Mass celebrates the work they do on a daily basis.

Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley celebrated the White Mass in the chapel of St. John's Seminary.

Read More
Marie Szaniszlo


At 7:30 one recent morning, an hour before her clinic at St. Anthony Shrine opened, Andrea Caputo went looking for one of her patients on the streets of Boston.

Read More
Safe Spaces
Jennifer Fallon


Desperate times call for desperate measures. And some believe that includes using tax dollars to care for people while they inject illegal drugs.

Read More
Health Affairs Blog

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more people died from drug overdoses in 2014 than in any year on record. Most of these deaths—78 every day—involved an opioid. Closer to home in Boston, deaths from opioid overdoses increased by 50 percent from 2014 to 2015 (Note 1). In our practice, Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program (BHCHP), based on the corner of Massachusetts Avenue and Albany Street (the epicenter of Boston’s drug activity), opioid overdoses have become the leading cause of death among our patients.

Read More

One of the earliest electronic health record (EHR) systems was designed for the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program in 1994 by engineers at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Laboratory of Computer Science. Before such systems were widely available, this one allowed multiple providers caring for the homeless — in one case, as many as 50 unique providers — to access a single patient’s record.

Read More
Behavioral Healthcare

A Boston not-for-profit turned heads in April when it opened a safe room where drug users can ride out highs under medical supervision. The Supportive Place for Observation and Treatment, operated under the Boston Health Care for the Homeless program, specifically notes it is not a safe injection facility, therefore, drug-use activity is not permitted on the property.

Read More
Billie Starks for The Boston Globe

I hope that our community will continue to turn attention to and exhibit bravery over the gravity of trauma and addiction.

Read More