On 1 October 2018, the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 introduced a new legal duty on specified public services to refer service users they consider may be homeless or threatened with homelessness to a local housing authority.
For health services the impact will be on NHS trusts and foundation trusts in the provision of any of the following NHS health services:
accident and emergency services in a hospital
urgent treatment centres
in-patient treatment (of any kind)
The basic legal requirement for a referral is the inclusion of:
the individual’s contact details
the individual’s consent
the agreed reason for the referral (that they are homeless or threatened with homelessness)
General guidance on the duty to refer has been been published by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.