MLP | Boston offers training and education programs to physicians and allied health care providers to facilitate clinicians’ use of medical-legal partnership as a tool to improve the health and wellbeing of vulnerable populations.
Our teaching model employs a case-based approach to enhance the understanding of social determinants of health among front-line health care professionals, and to empower them to address these factors as a part of their clinical practice. Our model has 5 key learning objectives:
- Describe common social determinants of health;
- Screen patients for legal or social barriers to health;
- Identify laws and systems that govern these barriers;
- Diagnose patients with unmet legal needs in consultation with and/or by referral to a legal partner; and
- Treat patients with unmet legal needs with effective interventions.
In order to accomplish these objectives, health care professionals need a method for eliciting a history of social circumstances that is practical and focuses on the specific domains that are both vital to patient health and amenable to direct intervention. MLP | Boston uses a mnemonic device, I-HELPSM, to promote screening for unmet legal needs in these domains.
I-HELPSMaddresses issues that have been shown to directly impact patient health and wellbeing, including Income supports; Housing and utilities; Education and employment; Legal (immigration) status; and Personal and family stability and safety.
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