A Housing and Health Collaboration: Mount Rubidoux Manor and Inland Empire Health Plan

Alisha Sanders
Case Example
January 2021


Embedding a health navigator in a senior housing community improved residents’ sense of physical, mental, and social well-being.


This case study explores a California-based health navigator pilot program embedded in an 18-unit affordable senior housing community. The program is a collaboration between the senior community, Mount Rubidoux Manor, which houses older adults and adults with disabilities, and a Medicaid managed care organization, Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP). Many residents have complex health and social needs, including some with past experiences of homelessness, and the program aims to support physical, social and emotional well-being through connection to primary and specialty care, social services, group activities, and other resources. 


The health navigator program is a part of a larger health navigator initiative led by IEHP, but tailored for the Mount Rubidoux setting. A preliminary evaluation of the first 13 months of data revealed that the health navigator assessed 48 residents and delivered a range of services, including making referrals for residents to physical health, behavioral health, and health-related social needs care and services. Many residents followed through on these referrals and reported increases in their overall well-being over time.

The presence of the health navigator was increased over time (from one to three days per week) as the community became more familiar with the service and as trust and rapport with the navigator grew.


This case study offers valuable insights for health plans, community-based organizations, or other stakeholders who serve older adults and people with disabilities and are looking to embed health navigators withing housing communities.

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