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This study aimed at determining the prevalence of traumatic brain injuries (TBI) among guests staying at a low-barrier homeless shelter who represent an especially vulnerable subset of individuals experiencing homelessness. A total of 21 out of 35 shelter guests participated in the survey. We found that 17 (81.0%) had experienced at least one traumatic brain injury in their lifetime and 15 (71.3%) had TBI associated with loss of consciousness. In addition, 7 (33.3%) of the participants had experienced TBIs rated as moderate to severe. Of the participants with head trauma history, 16 (94.1%) experienced their injury before their first onset of homelessness. Compared to both the general population and the broader population of individuals experiencing homelessness, those in this sample were significantly more likely to experience TBI (95% CI 0.0000:0.2857; p < 0.001 and 95% CI 0.3333:0.7619; p < 0.015, respectively) and significantly more likely to experience severe TBI (95% CI 0.0000:0.09524; p < 0.001).


Nicholas Benjamin Ang, Jason Adam Wasserman. Prevalence of traumatic brain injury among the guests at a low-barrier homeless shelter. BMC research notes. 2021 Feb 04;14(1):44

PMID: 33541400

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