MassPACE Joins Healey-Driscoll Administration Roundtable Discussion with Health Care Leaders on the Impact of the Housing Crisis on Public Health

This was originally posted on LinkedIn. Read the post here.

Last Thursday, MassPACE’s Executive Director, Jennifer Maynard, had the honor of participating in a crucial roundtable discussion alongside Governor Healey, Lt. Governor Driscoll, and distinguished leaders like Health and Human Service Secretary Kate Walsh and Housing and Livable Communities Secretary Ed Augustus. The focus? The indispensable link between housing and healthcare.

Moderated by Secretaries Walsh and Augustus, the “Housing is Health Care” roundtable brought together industry experts, including representatives from hospitals, community health centers, and organizations like MassPACE. Together, they delved into the challenges healthcare providers and communities face due to the lack of affordable housing and its impact on patient outcomes.

Governor Healey rightly underscored the Affordable Homes Act’s potential to enhance public health and equity through investments in rehabilitating public housing, expanding supportive housing, and promoting environmental justice. Secretary Walsh brought up PACE as a solution to keep people in their homes, ensuring they can age in place. Upham’s Community Care CEO Jay Trivedi emphasized the vital role PACE plays in bridging healthcare and housing.

During Jenn’s remarks, she cited the new opening of 2Life’s JJ Carroll Senior Housing complex, which has a PACE day center built on the first floor. Jenn shared with the group information on our report on Considerations for Combining PACE with Housing, completed with the help of EOEA and Leading Age. The report details some of the different partnerships that exist between PACE and senior housing, such as supportive housing, rest homes, assisted living, housing authorities, and more. Some of these partnerships within senior housing have embedded 24/7 staff members in case residents need services to remain at home.

Jenn expressed our hope is to encourage housing partners, to continue to incorporate integrated comprehensive solutions— that bring housing and healthcare together to address the social determinants of health. PACE programs are committed to their mission of keeping people in the community and need these critical resources to support the aging population. She urged those at the table to explore opportunities such as re-purposing of closed senior care communities to infuse more housing now.

We are happy Jenn was there to add the perspective of aging adults. As we tackle the housing crisis in Massachusetts, we all need to work together, so communities can support folks as their needs change.

On behalf of: Upham’s Community Care Fallon Health Summit Eldercare Element Care PACE Neighborhood PACE Cambridge Health Alliance PACE, Trinity Health PACE Serenity Care Harbor Health Services, Inc. PACE

Thank you:Office of Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey
Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services