International Street Medicine Symposium IX

October 24-26, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts

May 1, 2013

Exciting News!

The Street Medicine Institute is excited to announce the 9th annual International Street Medicine Symposium, to be held in historic Boston, Massachusetts on October 24-26, 2013, with a special pre-symposium “Street Medicine 101” workshop on October 23rd for interested participants. The Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, widely regarded as one of the world’s largest and most effective homeless health care programs, has generously agreed to serve as a local sponsoring organization.

Information about registration, venue, and lodging, and the preliminary program schedule will be available soon at

Call for Presenters

The International Street Medicine Symposium Committee is pleased to extend an open invitation for presentation proposal submissions. While we are particularly interested in exploring themes related to continuity and coordination of care across the spectrum of homelessness, streets-to-housing interventions, and integration of Street Medicine programming into local hospitals and academic institutions, submissions in any topic area related to the health care of unsheltered homeless populations are welcome. Street Medicine providers and related organizations are encouraged to submit proposals for one of the following three presentation format categories:

A. Lecture (35 min. large-group presentation + 10 min. discussion)

This format is well-suited for the dissemination of new/updated information relating to the field of Street Medicine, review of clinically-pertinent innovations and best practices, and reporting of outcomes data from field research or interventions. Research-oriented submissions may be work-in-progress. Encouraged topic areas include, but are not limited to:

  1. Socio-environmental determinants of health (environmental threats, health care access, housing access, community building, advocacy)
  2. Morbidity, mortality, and vulnerability assessment
  3. Acute disease diagnosis and management
  4. Chronic disease management and quality of care measures
  5. Integrated management of common complicating co-morbidities (mental illness, substance abuse/addiction, and traumatic brain injury)
  6. Comprehensive primary care and outreach models that foster continuity and coordination of care across the spectrum of homelessness (streets, shelter, hospital, respite, housing)

B. Workshop (60 min. interactive, small-group presentation)

This format is well-suited for the sharing of practical knowledge, skills, and personal/professional/organizational enrichment strategies by presenters with particular expertise in any of these or other relevant topic areas:

  1. Creative patient engagement and motivational strategies designed to reduce barriers and enhance care access for the most marginalized individuals, especially those suffering from severe mental illness, personality disorders, addiction, or deep-seeded distrust
  2. Medical education and training approaches related to homelessness, including curriculum development and implementation, educational resource networking, and faculty mentoring of student-led organizations
  3. Initiating and nurturing relationships between service organizations and local hospitals, academic medical centers, and educational institutions
  4. Creating effective inter-agency and inter-disciplinary collaboration with respect to service, advocacy, and consumer involvement
  5. Fundraising approaches, skills, and resources relevant to Street Medicine practices
  6. Maintaining care access and quality during times of financial and/or political constraint
  7. Ethical challenges commonly encountered in providing care to unsheltered homeless populations
  8. Prevention of burn-out among clinicians and service agency staff

C. Poster (scientific poster format with dedicated viewing time)

This format is well-suited for clinical vignettes, highlighting program development/updates, description of service models, or exhibition of medical education approaches to service learning and outreach. Students and student organizations are particularly encouraged to submit in this format category, though non-students are also welcome to submit poster presentation proposals. (Students are not limited to this format category and may submit in a different category if more appropriate). Depending upon scheduling constraints, there may be an opportunity for selected posters to be presented orally as well.

All proposals submitted will be reviewed and judged by a panel that includes members of the Symposium Committee and other invited experts. Reviewers will evaluate proposals for presentation based upon the following three criteria:

1.   Specific written learning objectives (active voice preferred)
2.   A maximum 500-word abstract describing the presentation content, approach, and intended format (lecture, workshop, or poster). Abstracts will be judged relative to achievement of the following goals:
  a) Target Audience – How appropriate is the topic for an audience of clinicians, outreach workers, service agency representatives, and community stakeholders dedicated to improving the health and well-being of unsheltered homeless populations?
  b) Innovation – How novel is the information or approach in addressing a problem related to the health care of unsheltered homeless populations?
  c) Impact – How potentially beneficial are the findings, interventions, or programs to the care of patients/clients, development of services, training of providers, or sustainability of programs?

d) Applicability – How accessible and generalizable are the findings, interventions, or programs to other practice sites around the world?
  e) Knowledge Advancement – How valuable is the information or approach to the growing body of Street Medicine knowledge and clinical expertise? Have data/findings been collected, analyzed, and presented in a rigorous and scholarly way?
  f) Mission Advancement – How substantially does the information or approach promote/advance the values and vision of the Street Medicine Institute and International Street Medicine Symposium?
3.   Adherence to submission guidelines:
  a) Submissions must include current title, degree(s), and institutional/organizational affiliation and role for all presenters. A brief bio-sketch of presenters is welcome if available. The primary presenter should be listed first, followed by any co-presenters if applicable.
  b) Submissions must include contact information for the primary presenter including e-mail, phone, and mailing address.
  c) Submissions must be in Word document or PDF format.
  d) Submissions must be e-mailed to
  e) Submissions must be received by 12:00 am EST on May 31, 2013.

For lecture or workshop proposals selected for presentation, the primary presenter will receive a stipend of up to $750.00 (US) to help defray (documented) travel and lodging expenses incurred by that presenter only. For student poster proposals selected for presentation, the primary student presenter will be eligible for a limited number of travel/lodging stipends of up to $600.00 (US). In addition, for each proposal accepted for presentation regardless of format category, the primary presenter and one co-presenter (if applicable) will be exempted from any relevant registration fees. Submitters will be notified of the review committee’s decision on or before June 7, 2013. Questions about the Symposium or proposal submission process can be addressed to the committee chair at