The unsheltered homeless are those among us sleeping on the streets, under bridges, in doorways, parks and other public places. Many of them are personally vulnerable with mental illness, addictions, physical illness, HIV/AIDs and physical disabilities. Many of them are victims of physical and sexual abuse. Often, the unsheltered homeless have been released without shelter plans from prison, foster care, and mental institutions.
In 2007, there were nearly 800,000 people without homes in the U.S. Approximately 350,000 of those without homes were also living in the streets.
Healthcare for the homeless is an urgent public health concern. The unsheltered have significantly higher rates of HIV/AIDS (up to 35%); Hepatitis B (up to 30%); Active Tuberculosis (up to 68%), Body Louse Infections (up to 56%).