“This month marks the first anniversary of the tragic death of Freddie Gray and the unrest that followed. It was a moment that exposed gaping disparities within this city while bringing many of us together in common cause. As we approach this somber anniversary, we want to express our profound appreciation for the efforts you have undertaken over the past year to make our city stronger, and to encourage all of us to remember the critical work that still lies ahead.”

-Ronald Daniels, Paul Rothman and Ronald Peterson

Out of the unrest last year sprung Hopkins-wide efforts to engage the surrounding community to begin to resolve these disparities. A large part of our departmental efforts began with our Journeys in Medicine community panels where we held open discussions with leaders from both the community and Hopkins to talk about the issues facing our city and brainstorm ways in which we can partner.

Although these discussions have since ended, we recognize that our journey in medicine continues as some of the issues that led to the unrest still persist in our city daily.

We hope members of our department will continue to participate in programs that began to involve the community even before last year’s unrest such as Bayview’s Medicine for the Greater Good, the Diversity and Academic Advancements Summer Institute’s program that mentors Baltimore City high school students, and the inaugural Partnering with Patients in Decision-Making discussion that will take place on June 1.

Please also continue to follow this blog feature where Sherita Golden, executive vice chair, posts thought-provoking articles that may aid in our quest to understand the impact of implicit and unconscious bias on health care delivery and to implement effective interventions to reduce health and health care disparities.  Soon she will announce a Department of Medicine Civic Engagement Initiative, so stay tuned!

We thank all of you for opening your minds and hearts and recognizing room for improvement both within yourselves and throughout Hopkins as we continue our journey toward a more equal and enlightened Baltimore.

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