A local homeless prevention nonprofit is teaming up with the Uniformed Services University to coordinate volunteer medical care for homeless people in Bethesda and clients who have moved in to housing programs.
About 20 to 25 students from the Uniformed Services University, the military medical school on the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center campus, will visit clients of Bethesda Cares in their permanent housing programs to help with medical issues that come from years of being on the streets.
Bethesda Cares outreach specialists John Mendez said it’s common for former homeless people who enter housing programs to suffer from sleep deprivation, high blood pressure and diabetes after spending years sleeping and living outside.
“We need additional support to monitor their health,” Mendez said. “They’ve had years of the elements pounding on them.”
The volunteers have also started to go out with Mendez and other Bethesda Cares outreach workers to talk to people still living on the street, many of whom are medically vulnerable.