News & Events
2015 Harm Reduction Meeting
On October 29th, 2015, the Institute for Health and Social Policy convened leaders from across Maryland to discuss evidence-based approaches to addressing substance use disorders and drug-related violence in the state broadly and Baltimore City specifically. The full-day meeting brought together 75 high-level Maryland research, policy, and practice leaders from the law enforcement, substance use disorder treatment and policy, and violence prevention fields with the goal of developing Policy Recommendations that could be turned into legislation. The Institute for Health and Social Policy developed the meeting in partnership with Maryland Delegate Dan Morhaim, a Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Associate faculty member. Click to learn more about the 2015 Harm Reduction Meeting.
The Department of Health Policy and Management Celebrates its Centennial Month
Click here for a recap of our Centennial events in March.
Global Budgeting for Hospital Services: A Webcast Series
Click here to tune into past webcasts and to learn more about both Maryland and nationwide hospital budgeting systems.
News Releases and Stories
Florida Drug Database and ‘Pill Mill’ Regs Curbed State’s Top Opioid Prescribers, Study Suggests
In the first year that two Florida laws aimed at curbing opioid prescriptions were in effect, the state’s top opioid prescribers wrote significantly fewer prescriptions of this type of pain medication, a new analysis led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health finds. To learn more, click here.
Nonprofit Hospitals Earn Substantial Profits
Seven of the 10 most profitable hospitals in the United States in 2013 – each earning more than $163 million in profits from patient care services – were nonprofit hospitals, according to new research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Washington and Lee University. To learn more, click here.
Expert Panel Issues Recommendations for Health IT
As the U.S. health system goes digital, from patient records to fitness trackers to web-based medical insurance marketplaces, a national group of health information experts has issued recommendations to guide the new field of population health informatics. To learn more, click here.
Using Generic Cancer Drug Could Save Many Millions of Dollars
With the expiration in January of the patent on Gleevec, the drug that 15 years ago changed chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) from a death sentence to a treatable illness, insurance companies and patients have the opportunity to realize huge cost savings, new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research suggests. To learn more, click here.
‘Invisible Work’ Takes Toll on Unpaid Caregivers
Unpaid family and friends who assist older people with disabilities by coordinating doctor appointments and managing medications are significantly more likely to experience emotional, physical and financial difficulties than caregivers who don’t provide this type of support, new research finds. To learn more, click here.
Survey: Most Americans Support Smart Guns
Nearly 60 percent of Americans, if they buy a new handgun, are willing to purchase a smart or childproof gun – a weapon that is only operable in the hands of an authorized user – new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health-led research suggests. To learn more, click here.
‘Pill Mill’ Crackdown Linked to Fewer Painkiller Overdose Deaths in Florida
A crackdown on Florida’s “pill mills” – clinics dispensing large quantities of prescription painkillers often for cash-only and without proper medical examinations – appears to have dramatically reduced the number of overdose deaths in the state from these drugs and may have also led to a drop in heroin overdose deaths, new research suggests. To learn more, click here.
Inmates Getting Access to Medicaid Upon Release From Jail or Prison
New programs take advantage of new eligibility rules for government insurance, allowing most low-income men to enroll for first time. To learn more, click here.
Study: Paying for Transgender Health Care Cost-Effective
A new analysis led by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests that while most U.S. health insurance plans deny benefits to transgender men and women for medical care necessary to transition to the opposite sex, paying for sex reassignment surgery and hormones is actually cost-effective. To learn more, click here.
Public Health Leaders Urge Far-Reaching Reforms to Curb Prescription Opioid Epidemic
Comprehensive report calls for mandatory prescription monitoring programs, expanded naloxone access, tamper-resistant drug packaging, among other measures. To learn more, click here.
Friday Night at the ER
Master of Health Administration (MHA) students can’t understand what it takes to handle nightmarish situations simply by reading a textbook. That’s why William Ward, MBA, unpacks “Friday Night at the ER”—a board game created by Breakthrough Learning, Inc. that provides real-world experience without setting foot in a hospital. To read more, click here.
Restaurants Listing Calorie Counts on the Menu Offer More Lower Calorie Items
Large U.S.-based chain restaurants that voluntarily list calorie counts on their menus average nearly 140 fewer calories per item than those that do not post the information, new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health-led research suggests. To read more, click here.
Sara Bleich Named 2015-2016 White House Fellow
Sara N. Bleich, PhD, an associate professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a leading expert on obesity prevention policy is asked abourt been appointed one of the 2015-2016 White House Fellows. To read more, click here.
Daniel Webster Receives Prestigious David P. Rall Award for Advocacy
The David P. Rall Award for Advocacy in Public Health is awarded to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to public health through science-based advocacy. The area of consideration for the Rall Award is international in scope, and nominees include those working in a government agency, academic institution, or non-profit organization. Webster is the first gun violence prevention researcher to receive this award. To read more, click here.
Find Way to Focus On Dietary Supplement Safety, Experts Say
A former principal deputy commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is proposing a solution to the current gridlock over the regulation of dietary supplements: Focus less on whether these vitamins, minerals and herbal extracts actually do what they claim and instead take important steps to improve their safety. To read more, click here.
Experts Convene at Johns Hopkins to Discuss Mental Health, Addiction Policy
At a recent policy forum at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Kathryn Farinholt made things personal, breaking for a long pause as she described the sister she knew 45 years ago. Before schizophrenia. To read more, click here.
Four in Ten Older Adults Burdened by Demands of Health Care System
Nearly four in ten older adults say that managing their health care needs is difficult for them or their families, that medical appointments or tests get delayed or don’t get done, or that all of the requirements of their health care are too much to handle, new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research suggests. To read more, click here.
Many Use Prescription Painkillers, Most See Abuse as Major Health Concern
More than one in four Americans has taken prescription painkillers in the past year, even as a majority say that abuse of these medications is a very serious public health concern, according to new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research. To read more, click here.
Suicide-By-Firearm Rates Shift in Two States After Changes in State Gun Laws
A new study examining changes in gun policy in two states finds that handgun purchaser licensing requirements influence suicide rates. Researchers estimate that Connecticut’s 1995 law requiring individuals to obtain a permit or license to purchase a handgun after passing a background check was associated with a 15.4 percent reduction in firearm suicide rates, while Missouri’s repeal of its handgun purchaser licensing law in 2007 was associated with a 16.1 percent increase in firearm suicide rates. To read more, click here.
In First Year, Two Florida Laws Reduce Amount of Opioids Prescribed, Study Suggests
Two Florida laws, enacted to combat prescription drug abuse and misuse in that state, led to a small but significant decrease in the amount of opioids prescribed the first year the laws were in place, a new study by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researchers suggests. To read more, click here.
Connecticut Handgun Licensing Law Associated With 40 Percent Drop in Gun Homicides
A 1995 Connecticut law requiring a permit or license – contingent on passing a background check – in order to purchase a handgun was associated with a 40 percent reduction in the state’s firearm-related homicide rate, new research suggests. To read more, click here.
Some Hospitals Marking Up Prices More Than 1,000 Percent
The 50 hospitals in the United States with the highest markup of prices over their actual costs are charging out-of-network patients and the uninsured, as well as auto and workers’ compensation insurers, more than 10 times the costs allowed by Medicare, new research suggests. It’s a markup of more than 1,000 percent for the same medical services. To read more, click here.
Large Majority of Americans—Including Gun Owners—Support Stronger Gun Safety Policies
A large majority of Americans – including gun owners – continue to support stronger policies to prevent gun violence than are present in current federal and most state law, according to a new national public opinion survey conducted by researchers with the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research at the Bloomberg School of Public Health. To read more, click here.
Henry Waxman Named Centennial Policy Scholar at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Former Congressman Henry A. Waxman, one of the most accomplished legislators in the history of the U.S. Congress, joins the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health for the coming year as its Centennial Policy Scholar. To read more, click here.
Strong Regulations on Gun Sales Prevent High-Risk Individuals from Accessing Firearms and Can Reduce Violent Crime, Study Finds
A review of 28 published studies examining U.S. gun policy found that laws and regulations designed to keep firearms from people at risk of committing violence, such as felons and those under restraining orders, are effective and, in some instances, reduce lethal violence. The researchers also found that certain laws, including rigorous permit-to-purchase laws which require a permit to be issued before completing a handgun sale and comprehensive background checks, are associated with keeping guns out of the hands of criminals. To read more, click here.
Despite Broad Awareness, Only Half of Doctors Surveyed Use Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs
In a new survey, researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that physicians report relatively high awareness of state databases that track drug prescriptions but more than one-fifth indicated they were not aware of their state’s program at all. To read more, click here.
Despite Federal Law, Some Insurance Exchange Plans Offer Unequal Coverage for Mental Health
One-quarter of the health plans being sold on health insurance exchanges set up through the Affordable Care Act offer benefits that appear to violate a federal law requiring equal benefits for general medical and mental health care, according to new research led by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. To read more, click here.
AcademyHealth Honors Johns Hopkins ACG Case-Mix System with 2015 Health Services Research Impact Award
A team at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health that developed one of the world’s most widely used healthcare analytical tools has been awarded AcademyHealth’s 2015 Health Services Research Impact Award. The Johns Hopkins ACG Case-Mix System is a comprehensive software-based tool that evaluates the types of medical conditions a person has and is used to assess everything from which patients are most at risk of being readmitted to a hospital to morbidity trends in populations. To read more, click here.
Lyme Disease Costs Up to $1.3 Billion Per Year to Treat, Study Finds
Lyme disease, transmitted by a bite from a tick infected by the Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria, had long been considered easy to treat, usually requiring a single doctor’s visit and a few weeks of antibiotics for most people.
But new research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests that a prolonged illness associated with the disease in some patients is more widespread and serious than previously understood. With an estimated 240,000 to 440,000 new cases of the tick-borne illness diagnosed every year, the researchers found that Lyme disease costs the U.S. health care system between $712 million and $1.3 billion a year — or nearly $3,000 per patient on average — in return doctor visits and testing, likely to investigate the cause of some patients’ lingering symptoms of fatigue, musculoskeletal pain and memory problems. These visits come after patients have finished their original course of antibiotics. To read more, click here.
Johns Hopkins Evidence-Based Practice Center Awarded 5-Year Contract from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has awarded a five-year contract to the Johns Hopkins Evidence-based Practice Center (JHU EPC) to help the Center continue to promote evidence-informed decision-making in clinical practice and public health policy. JHU EPC was established in 1997 as a charter member of the EPC Program supported by AHRQ’s Effective Healthcare Program (EHC). Today there are a total of 13 EPC’s. To read more, click here.