Recent News

Civil unrest related to Freddie Gray death caused depressive symptoms among mothers in affected neighborhoods, study finds (Baltimore Sun)

Half of the mothers who lived in the neighborhoods wracked by the civil unrest that followed the death of Freddie Gray in 2015 became so stressed by the circumstances that they suffered from insomnia, loss of appetite and other depressive symptoms, according to new research by the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

While the mothers weren’t tested to see if they fit the clinical definition of depression, the researchers said the results found that the sight of burning buildings, looting, and the constant blue lights from police cars was enough to have a major emotional impact in neighborhoods located in the six ZIP codes where the brunt of the unrest took place.

Gray was found unconscious with fatal neck injuries suffered while in police custody on April 12, 2015. His subsequent death sparked the unrest.

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Baltimore City Health Commissioner Supports White House Opioid Commission’s Recommendations

BALTIMORE, MD (August 1, 2017) –Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen today issued the following statement in response to recommendations included in the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis draft interim report.

Baltimore City Health Department Launches Billion Step Challenge

BALTIMORE, MD (July 29, 2017)—Mayor Catherine E. Pugh and The Baltimore City Health Department (BCHD) are launching the yearlong Billion Step Challenge, a citywide wellness challenge to encourage all residents and employees in Baltimore City to get active. The initiative, as part of BCHD’s strategic blueprint Health Baltimore 2020, will include partnerships with other city agencies, corporate entities and community organizations to host events that will promote physical activity. Healthy Baltimore 2020 outlines key priorities and objectives through which BCHD aims to reduce health disparities in Baltimore by half over the next 10 years.

AARP Foundation Grant to Support Food Access for Low-Income Senior Residents in Baltimore City

Funding supports easy food delivery options and cooking classes

BALTIMORE (July 27, 2017) — The Baltimore City Health Department, American Heart Association and No Boundaries Coalition have joined forces to provide healthy food access for low-income Baltimore City seniors thanks to a $750,000 grant from AARP Foundation.

Baltimore City Health Department Hosts Healthy Baltimore 2020 Community Conversation on HIV, STD, and Clinical Services

BALTIMORE, MD (July 25, 2017)—The Baltimore City Health Department (BCHD) today hosted the latest Healthy Baltimore 2020 Community Conversation, a town hall meeting offering residents the opportunity to provide public comment on Healthy Baltimore 2020—BCHD’s recently released strategic blueprint for health and wellness through the lens of health equity.

Federal cuts affect Baltimore teen pregnancy prevention programs (WBAL-TV)

The White House is cutting millions in federal funding to teen pregnancy prevention programs, which has left some in Baltimore feeling blindsided.

Baltimore City health leaders are scrambling to regroup this week after sudden word from the federal government that funding has been cut to two major teen pregnancy prevention programs.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is pulling the plug on more than $200 million in Obama-era grants to 81 teen pregnancy prevention programs and research projects across the country. It adds up to a $2 million budget gap for Baltimore's Healthy Teen Network.

"The whole field, I think, was blindsided," said Pat Paluzzi, with the Healthy Teen Network. "To all of a sudden get the letter saying your grant either ended June 30 of this year or was ending June 30 of next year, two years ahead of schedule, was a hard pill to swallow."

The Baltimore City Health Department is losing $3.5 million, which is the last two years of its grant to provide health education to middle and high school students.

"(It) means about 20,000 of our students are not going to be able to get these comprehensive reproductive health education services anymore," Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said.

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Dangerous heat expected for Artscape weekend (WMAR-TV)

With a heat index expected of between 101 and 104 degrees expected beginning tomorrow through the weekend, Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen has issued a Code Red Heat Advisory for Thursday, July 20, 2017 through Sunday, July 23, 2017. The heat index is a measure of air temperature and relative humidity and indicates how hot it feels to individuals outside.

"Heat is a silent killer and a public health threat, particularly for the young, the elderly and those in our city who are the most vulnerable," Dr. Wen said. "As Baltimore prepares for a fun weekend with one of the nation's largest free arts festivals, it is important for all residents to protect against hyperthermia and dehydration. Please be cautious and remember to stay cool and hydrated."

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Code Red Heat Advisory Issued For Baltimore For Artscape Weekend (WJZ-TV)

Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen has issued a code red heat advisory for Artscape weekend.

The heat advisory is for Thursday, July 20, through Sunday, July 23, as the heat index is expected to be between 101 and 104 degrees

“Heat is a silent killer and a public health threat, particularly for the young, the elderly and those in our city who are the most vulnerable,” Dr. Wen said in a release. “As Baltimore prepares for a fun weekend with one of the nation’s largest free arts festivals, it is important for all residents to protect against hyperthermia and dehydration. Please be cautious and remember to stay cool and hydrated.”

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Heat Advisory In Effect, Code Red Heat Advisory For The Weekend (WBAL Radio)

Baltimore City health officials issued a Code Red heat advisory through Artscape weekend.

The heat and high humidity will make it feel like it is 105.

WBAL meteorologist Ava Marie says the extreme heat will remain through Monday.

“Heat is a silent killer and a public health threat, particularly for the young, the elderly and those in our city who are the most vulnerable,” health commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said in a statement. “As Baltimore prepares for a fun weekend with one of the nation’s largest free arts festivals, it is important for all residents to protect against hyperthermia and dehydration. Please be cautious and remember to stay cool and hydrated.”

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Baltimore health department gets $150,000 grant to expand healthy local stores program (Baltimore Sun)

The Baltimore City Health Department has received a $150,000 grant to work with the owners of local corner stores to stock and sell healthy foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grain foods and low-fat milk.

The two-year grant from the Maryland Community Health Resources Commission will be used to add 40 stores to the Baltimarket Healthy Stores Program, which now has 17 retailers participating. The health department will also hire 40 young people to serve as nutrition educators and supply the stores with advertising materials to promote the program. The program was started in 2014 with the goal of providing healthy food options to those living in so-called food deserts, or places with few traditional grocery stores.

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