May 24, 2013
Why HMIS is Needed
According to the State of Homelessness in Missouri 2011 Report, the number of reported homeless persons in Missouri increased 12%, from a total of 7,038 homeless persons on a given night in the winter of 2009 to 7,877 homeless persons on a given night in 2010.
There are multiple reasons for homelessness, including but not limited to lack of affordable housing, lack of a living wage, health status and domestic violence. The Homeless Missourians Information System is one way to gain a clearer picture of who experiences homelessness, how that population changes over time and what types of services are needed to prevent and end homelessness.
What is HMIS?
The Homeless Missourians Information System (HMIS) is an online database that stores information about individuals and families who seek housing and homeless prevention services. This information includes individual client demographics (e.g., age, education, gender) and household information (e.g., medical, income, housing status). Agencies are able to utilize this information for program reporting and management.
In the Balance of State, Jasper/Newton and Christian/Green/Webster Continua of Care, the software used for HMIS is called the Regional Online Systems Information Exchange (ROSIE). This secure web-based system allows homeless service providers to enter client data while being assured the information is protected.
A range of homeless service providers may participate in the HMIS. These include emergency shelters, transitional housing programs, permanent supportive housing providers, rapid rehousing programs, homeless prevention programs and other service providers in contact with people experiencing homelessness, such as outreach programs and drop-in centers.
Our HMIS is overseen by the HMIS Steering Committee, which includes representatives from each of the eight Continua of Care in the state, representatives from each of the 10 regions in the Balance of State Continuum of Care and various nonprofit and governmental organizations serving specific populations, such as youth and veterans. MASW administers all aspects of the HMIS Project.
For more detailed and project information, please see the HMIS Policy and Procedure Manual located on the “Publications” page.