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George W. Comstock Center for Public Health Research and Prevention

Covid-19 response

03/13/2020: Comstock Center operations temporarily halted to prevent viral transmission. 

March 2020:  Comstock Center Responds to COVID-19 Outbreak

The Johns Hopkins Comstock Center has been working with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and the Washington County Health Department to do our best to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

We believe the most important thing that we can do to help keep our participants and staff healthy is to follow the guidelines from public health and government officials asking people to stay informed, wash your hands, and encourage social distancing.  In keeping with this policy, the Comstock Center has cancelled all of our participant appointments.  Additionally, we have placed our staff on temporary leave.  We encourage all of our participants and their families to follow the guidelines and instructions from authorities to:

  1.  Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.
  2.  Avoid touching your face, especially your nose, eyes, and mouth.
  3.  Cover your cough or sneeze with your shoulder or elbow, or a tissue.
  4.  Avoid shaking hands or other close contact during this time.
  5.  Stay home when you are sick, and notify your health care provider in advance of a visit.
  6.  Limit visitors.
  7.  Familiarize yourself with the symptoms of COVID-19.

Below we have listed some websites with information about COVID-19 (Coronavirus).  These include sites with local information. 

If you live in Washington County, please note the following information from Meritus Medical Center:  "Public questions related to COVID-19 may be directed to or the dedicated care line at 301-790-9170."

If you are having a medical emergency, please call 911.


Please stay safe and healthy!

The Johns Hopkins Comstock Center Investigators and Staff


Link to Meritus Medical Center website:

Link to the Washington County Health Department:

Link to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

Link to Johns Hopkins Medicine website:


Community members, faculty, and staff of the Johns Hopkins Comstock Center continue to advance knowledge about health and prevention. The current studies build on nearly a century of community-based research collaborations between Johns Hopkins University and Washington County. Currently, our largest studies focus on heart disease and aging (ARIC), cancer (CLUE), strategies to reduce falls (STURDY), and promote cognitive health among elders (ACHIEVE). We will complete ARIC visit 7 by November 15, 2019 as well as randomization to the ACHIEVE study by October 11,2019. The NIH has recognized the outstanding achievements of the ARIC study and incredible contributions of the participants by funding annual visits for ARIC and its neurocognitive study starting in 2020. Each visit will feature new important research components. For example, visit 8 will include brain MRI and PET studies as well as accelerometry and Gait Mat (15,000 sensors detecting balance and speed) assessment of gait and falls risk.
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