First few Article Sentences
Homelessness in the United States continues to grow at an alarming rate, with an increasing number of this population consisting of families with children. Homeless families face consistent health problems more frequently than the average population and lack continuous access to health care. Increasing access to healthcare by homeless families remains a difficult task particularly because homeless families are a largely marginalized, isolated, and alienated population stigmatized by society. Families living doubled-up with other family members, friends, or acquaintances, often couch surfing and living in overcrowded conditions, often go uncounted by official homeless counts, therefore not only deflating official homeless counts, but also affecting the amount of resources allocated towards alleviating homelessness. Doubled-up families face many of the same barriers for obtaining stable housing and accessing health services as homeless families, and need to be included in official homeless counts to accurately describe the level of homelessness in the United States.