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Health status and resources of rural homeless women and children

The purpose of this research is to describe the health status and health resources for women and children who are homeless in a Midwestern rural community. A group of 31 rural homeless women in a shelter participated in the study by answering questions on the Rural Homeless Interview developed by the investigators. The findings revealed higher than expected rates of illness, accidents, and adverse life events, with the incidence of substance abuse and mental illness being comparable to data from other homeless populations. The data on children were omitted by lack of knowledge on the part of their mothers. Some mothers reported that their children were in foster care, had been adopted, or were being cared of by others. The inability to access health