Letter from Our CEO: Wearing Trifocal Lenses | November 2017

Bobby Watts


Bobby Watts, CEO of the National HCH Council

Dear Friends,

With many immediate time-sensitive issues and the ongoing crisis of mass homelessness, how should the National Health Care for the Homeless Council direct its efforts? The Council is entering a period in which we’ll be wearing trifocal lenses to answer that question. Trifocal lenses will enable us 1) to understand and respond quickly where necessary to relevant policy developments and emerging health issues, 2) to keep building the collective knowledge of the Health Care for the Homeless Community for how best to serve people experiencing homelessness, and 3) to determine the best strategies to employ over the next few years to most effectively work together to advance our mission of eliminating homelessness by ensuring comprehensive health care and secure housing for everyone. We will soon start a Strategic Planning process (the third lens), and you’ll hear more about it soon—and hopefully participate in some way.

This issue of Council News is using the first two lenses, and there is something in this issue for everyone, so I urge you to look and see which articles are most relevant for you. I guarantee there is at least one that you will find helpful.

There is a wealth of information about the developments in the rapidly changing policy environment in which we live and work: the recent presidential commission report on the opioid crisis, the Council’s response to the Health Center funding cliff, and our comments on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ strategic priorities. This issue also contains important information and opportunities for building upon and advancing the collective knowledge of the HCH community through our Learning Collaboratives. We invite you to apply to participate in these exciting new learning communities on integrating Behavioral Health and primary care and the use of health IT in HCH clinics. Participation in the Learning Collaboratives will help you sharpen your practice and create information and best practices for others in our field, so please consider applying soon. There are also articles on trainings and resources, including organizing tips to help you honor Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day (December 21).

The Council exists to help people experiencing homelessness and the professionals serving them. In short, we exist for YOU. Please don’t hesitate to let us know of ways we can serve you better.

In Solidarity,


Bobby Watts

Chief Executive Officer
National Health Care for the Homeless Council
(615) 226-2292
bwatts@nhchc.org