A mobile outreach van in Boston uses data-driven hotspotting to bring on-demand addiction clinical care and harm reduction services directly to high-risk populations
The Kraft Center for Community Health at Massachusetts General Hospital sponsors a mobile outreach program, called Community Care in Reach, to reach at-risk populations in Boston neighborhoods with treatment and harm reduction services.
These services include:
- providing medications for addiction treatment (e.g., buprenorphine)
- clean syringes
- counseling on risk reduction
- referrals to treatment
- a wide range of preventive care and chronic disease management
Services are targeted using data on overdose deaths to find those neighborhoods most in need of outreach; four locations are now serviced weekly.
The program has engaged stakeholders across the continuum of care as well as the police department and local business owners. There is a planned expansion of the program to include fentanyl testing, as well as coordination with other mobile outreach vans in Massachusetts to share best practices. It is supported in part by the GE Foundation, Ford Motor Company, the Hearst Foundation, Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, and the Boston Public Health Commission. A toolkit based on Community Care in Reach for communities to replicate this model can be found here.
The program has documented its adaption to the COVID-19 pandemic in the peer-reviewed literature.