Strengthening Johns Hopkins' Commitment to Baltimore City

The message from the Oct. 20 Johns Hopkins Town Meeting
came through loud and clear: Baltimore citizens and The Johns Hopkins Hospital must depend on and trust one another
to nurture a healthy, thriving city. “The first step in ‘revitalizing’ a community is to ask the community what it needs and then listen,” said Paul B.Rothman, dean of the medical faculty
and CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine,in his opening remarks.
   Rothman was joined by Redonda G. Miller, president of The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and Ronald R. Peterson, president of the Johns Hopkins Health System and executive vice president of Johns Hopkins Medicine. Thomas Lewis, vice president of government
and community relations for The Johns Hopkins University, and James Page, vice president of diversity and inclusion for Johns Hopkins Medicine, also outlined a host of tactics for “redoubling
our community outreach” as part of the Johns Hopkins Medicine community engagement strategy. Following the unrest in 2015, Johns Hopkins held dozens of Town Meetings to hear the concerns of local communities, which ranged from the dearth of jobs and subpar education to the unmet needs of children and poor social support. Six
task forces made up of faculty and staff members from across Johns Hopkins were formed to address their concerns and make recommendations. Some of the new programs that grew out of task
force discussions have already rolled out; others are soon to come. They include:
Baltimore Population Health
Workforce Collaborative
The collaborative will target highpoverty communities throughout
Baltimore City to recruit, train and hire residents for newly established entry-level core jobs over the next three years.
Jobs Hub
Over the next two years, Johns Hopkins Medicine will consider development of a center that provides assistance to residents seeking jobs.
Continuing Commitment to 
Hire Applicants with Criminal
Johns Hopkins’ hiring process ensures it will place candidates in jobs where they can succeed.
In-School Volunteer 
Johns Hopkins Medicine employees
looking for volunteer opportunities in
schools can sign up online.
Community Conversation Tour
Johns Hopkins Medicine leaders will tour community organizations in East Baltimore campus neighborhoods and explore possibilities for partnerships.
Include Community in the Johns 
Hopkins Medicine Strategic Plan
Integrating community into the Strategic Plan will create a framework for setting goals and measuring results of our community outreach.
Also highlighted during the Town Meeting was the Community Health 
Needs Assessment and Implementation 
Strategy, a collaboration between The Johns Hopkins Hospital and Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. More than 750 community
residents gave feedback for the assessment, including seniors, children from low-income homes, citizens returning from prison and those who are homeless.“This is not some report that will die on
the shelf,” said Miller. Survey responses reflected that “the top two priorities are jobs and education,” she reported, taking note of new and existing Johns Hopkins programs that provide jobs
and education.
Miller also stressed the pressing need for mental health services in the surveyed communities. Thirty percent of assessment participants said they suffer from depression, Miller said. She has hope that a pilot program at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and Johns Hopkins Bayview will help to fill in the gaps in mental health care. The Behavioral
Health Intervention Team “is a three-member ‘SWAT’ team that brings together a psychiatrist, nurse practitioner and social worker to assess patients for behavior health issues and link them to
resources and treatment.”
                                                                        —Stephanie Shapiro