The VI-SPDAT is the result of a combination of two tools – the Vulnerability Index (VI) survey created by Community Solutions for use in street outreach, which helps to determine the chronicity and medical vulnerability of homeless persons, and the Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool (SPDAT) created by OrgCode as an intake and case management tool. The VI-SPDAT is a pre-screening or triage tool that is designed to be used by all providers within a community to quickly assess the health and social needs of homeless persons and match them with the most appropriate support and housing interventions that are available.
A triage tool like the VI-SPDAT allows homeless service providers to similarly assess and prioritize the universe of people who are homeless in their community and identify whom to treat first based on the acuity of their needs. It is a brief survey that service providers, outreach workers, and even volunteers can use to determine an acuity score for each homeless person who participates. The scores can then be compared and used to identify and prioritize candidates for different housing interventions based upon their acuity. Using the VI-SPDAT, providers can move beyond only assisting those who present at their particular agency and begin to work together to prioritize all homeless people in the community, regardless of where they are assessed, in a consistent and transparent manner.