Figure 8.  Taken by Margaret Molloy.

Figure 8.  Taken by Margaret Molloy.

Tri-Morbidity is a co-occurring disorder (psychiatric plus substance use) with a chronic medical condition.  Disorders of physical health, mental health and substance use disorders are common in the unsheltered population.16  It is important to attempt to address medical illnesses, mental health, and substance dependence, in every encounter when the patient is ready.

About half of all unsheltered respondents in a study of 64,000 reported they suffer from a combination of physical and mental health issues and a substance use condition—a state of tri-morbidity. Additionally, unsheltered women experienced high rates of violence and trauma.17