Emergency assistance in Pinellas County.

Emergency assistance, which are mostly offered from the department of social services in Pinellas County, can provide qualified families with a number of financial assistance programs. The county can help by facilitating homeless prevention, energy assistance, affordable health care, and free or low cost prescriptions for the low income. Get more information below on services offered, as well as the contact information.

Prescription medication assistance – Various health and social services offer residents of Pinellas County access to either free or reduced cost prescription drugs. The resources offered include the following.

Medical Homes, which are located around the county and have an onsite limited pharmacy as noted below. Note that the Mobile Medical Unit does not carry prescription drugs on board. They instead offer vouchers to clients. All needed prescriptions may be filled at local, participating pharmacies or stores in the region.

Also try contacting the Pinellas County Health Plan and their Medical Homes, which offer prescription coverage with no co-pays to residents in need. This will normally be for residents with a very low income and that lack insurance coverage. Be sure to stop by a Medical Home near you to see if you qualify for the free medications. Get help with medicine from the Mobile Medical Units, which as noted will only offer referrals as they do not have items on board.

Burial Assistance and Funeral Care for Indigent and Unclaimed Persons is administered in Florida by the Pinellas County government. The local municipality needs to organize the proper burial arrangements for residents whose bodies are unclaimed or who are poverty-stricken. Their immediate family members can apply for this service too. The county is committed to providing this service with respect and dignity. It is also required by state law. The two key partners are.
Largo Chapel, 716 Seminole Blvd., Largo, Florida 33770, phone (727) 559-7793
Gulfport Chapel, 5601 Gulfport Blvd. S., Gulfport, FL 33707, (727) 347-5521

A key partner agency is the Pinellas County Housing Authority, or PCHA. This government affiliated agency addresses housing needs of the community. The number is 727-443-7684 and the main office is in Largo Florida. Most of the programs are for very low income families, disabled, or seniors. Among resources are the following.




  • They process applications for the section 8 Housing Choice Voucher, however there is almost always a waiting list. Or in some cases “reservations” are taken by the agency to even get on this list. The vouchers can be used to pay a portion of the rent on an approved housing unit or apartment.
  • HomeShare Pinellas is an innovative program in which people that need help paying rent are teamed up with another party. Maybe in lieu of paying rent they will provide services to a senior, such as shopping or preparing meals. This helps them save money on their housing costs, so both parties benefit.
  • The local Home Ownership Resource Center is the place to go if you own a home and are behind on your mortgage. The location can also provide advice and support to potential home buyers too.
  • HUD-VASH is for veterans in the Pinellas County area. They can receive funds for rent, paying security deposits, and case management. The staff at the center will also help the veteran apply for other social services.
  • The Housing Authority has information on shelters and transitional housing as well.
  • Project-Based Rental Assistance is another resources for the working poor, very low income, and elderly in the county.
  • Other low income housing units may be offered. They are part of Public Housing Program, Assisted Living units for seniors, or just plan Affordable Housing.

Pinellas County Veteran Services can support former members of the military and their family members. This resource helps qualified Pinellas County veterans and their families receive better access to emergency financial assistance, government benefits, and related services. Receive support such as Funeral Benefits, Low cost Home Loans, Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Services, and Life Insurance.

Senior Emergency Home Energy Assistance Program

Residents who are 60 years and older can get help in paying for gas and electric bills. Eligible low income residents who are seniors can receive financial benefits and grants for paying a defined portion of their bills up to twice a year, once in the hot Florida cooling season and once in the winter. To apply for this program, clients need to call the following.

  • St Petersburg is served by Enoch Davis Community Center, 1111 18th Ave S, St Petersburg 33705, telephone - (727) 821-0584
  • Largo residents dial Pinellas Village, 8384 Bayou Boardwalk, Largo 33777, (727) 202-6803





Free basic health care

The county social and health services department runs a mobile health care operation, which is really a medical office on wheels. The people who work at the mobile unit include several nurses, a medical director, examiner, social workers and case managers. There are also volunteers who provide additional support to the clinic.

Uninsured and homeless Pinellas County residents can receive free basic health or dental care from the mobile medical unit. If the patient needs information on other Department of Social Service programs, such as the Affordable Care Act, this can be arranged too. Please remember that emergency services and specialty care are not provided on the unit.

The mobile health care unit travels to almost twenty locations across Pinellas County Florida and services people with no health insurance. This unit program is a Federally Qualified Community Health Center (FQCHC) and is also partially funded by the Bureau of Primary Health Care.

Some of the medical care offered includes basic treatment for a brief illness. Physicals for employment or school are available. Some limited prescriptions are offered at the main facility. But medication requests are usually fulfilled by issuing a voucher. Other assistance includes treatment for long-term illnesses and laboratory services.

Limited dental care is also available in Pinellas County from the Health Program.  This may be cleanings or referrals for needs such as an extraction. Call  (727) 432-4763.




Disabled in Pinellas County

Residents with documented medical disabilities can also receive help from the Emergency Financial Assistance Program. Financial aid and other social service programs are focused on people with documented medical disabilities. Residents of the county will be able to work with compassionate case managers to achieve economic self-sufficiency over the long term.

Among services offered include assistance in applying for/obtaining Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits as well as Social Security Disability. Also, apply for up to $450 a month for help with mortgage payments, utilities, rent and food. This can take care of the clients basic needs of shelter and food. Disabled can also get referrals and information to non-profits and government assistance. There are many other resources available, and find details on disability assistance in Florida.

The various Pinellas emergency assistance and social services are administered from two different locations. The offices are at 2189 Cleveland St., Suite #230, Clearwater, Florida 33765 (727) 464-8400 as well as 647 1st Ave. N. -St. Petersburg, Florida 33701, call (727) 582-7781

By Jon McNamara

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