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The Legacy of Henrietta Lacks

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Role of The Johns Hopkins Hospital

The Johns Hopkins Hospital

At the time that Henrietta was a patient, Johns Hopkins was one of the few leading hospitals that served African-Americans — as was stipulated by Mr. Johns Hopkins, founder of the university and hospital, in his will.

But Johns Hopkins was a segregated hospital at that time, and that racial discrimination was often unacceptably a part of day-to-day interaction.

Today, Johns Hopkins focuses intensely on providing the best care to every patient and upholding the highest standards of medical ethics. We have a special commitment to Baltimore City, with a long history of working to improve the health and well-being of our community.

Today, we are more committed than ever — investing heavily in comprehensive community development and ongoing health initiatives. To learn more about our commitment, visit and