Healthcare: A Cure for Housing

The Center for Active Design is thrilled to announce the release of our most recent publication, Healthcare: A Cure for Housing. This new resource identifies ten best practices for investing in affordable housing, drawing from healthcare industry leaders at the forefront of tackling access to affordable housing as a way to impact health.

The report features six case studies that demonstrate how affordable housing can be leveraged to achieve a double bottom line—successfully improving the health of patients while generating the profitability needed to expand operations and impact. For example, among Medicaid recipients, affordable housing has been shown to contribute to a 12% reduction in overall healthcare expenditures, an 18% decrease in emergency department visits, and a 20% increase in primary care use.

Housing crisis compels innovative investments

Healthcare: A Cure For Housing outlines an essential pathway to address today’s affordable housing crisis. Developed with generous support from the Kresge Foundation, the publication serves as a valuable resource for healthcare companies, community development financial institutions, developers, and housing advocates alike. “The affordable housing crisis is complex, and in order to solve, we must expand investment from diverse stakeholders, explains Stacey Barbas, Senior Program Officer with the Kresge Foundation’s Health Program. “Given the connection between health and housing, the healthcare sector has a vested interest in increasing access to quality, affordable housing within the communities they serve.”

The report’s contributors reflect a diversity of institutional scales and geographic reach, and their stories illuminate multiple pathways for healthcare actors to invest in affordable housing:

Bon Secours Mercy Health - Baltimore, MD
Central City Concern - Portland, OR
CommonSpirit Health - California
Nationwide Children’s Hospital - Columbus, OH
ProMedica - Toledo, OH
UnitedHealthcare - Nationwide

Market transformation is vital to health and housing

Over the years, it has become increasingly clear that affordable housing isn’t simply about shelter.

“Having access to affordable, safe, and stable housing is fundamental to supporting health," says Joanna Frank, President & CEO of CfAD. "As the operator of Fitwel, we know how to design housing to optimize health. With this new publication, we are identifying practical steps to increase investments in affordable housing from all those who benefit from having a healthier population. These healthcare institutions have already made the connection, and we are excited to celebrate their innovations.”

CfAD recently collaborated with Fannie Mae to develop the Healthy Housing Rewards™ program, which provides a loan pricing discount to borrowers that achieve Fitwel Certification for affordable housing projects. Healthcare: A Cure for Housing expands CfAD’s efforts to bring about market transformation throughout the real estate sector.

“By featuring success stories from across the healthcare industry, and portraying the economic benefits of these efforts, the Center for Active Design is helping bring new leaders into the fold,” says Warren Hanson, President and CEO of the Greater Minnesota Housing Fund. “In doing so, this publication can help further investment in quality, affordable housing across the country and motivate the development of new, strategic, multisector partnerships.”

Download your copy today!