MWPH Recognized for Childhood Vaccination Clinics for Baltimore City Schoolchildren
BALTIMORE, MD (NOVEMBER 29) - The Community Health Advisory Board (CHAB) of Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital (MWPH) was recognized by Mayor Brandon Scott and the City of Baltimore for its leadership in providing access to childhood immunizations. The hospital held two clinics in partnership with Maryland Vaccines for Children and the Baltimore City Public School System. In total, 276 Baltimore City students were vaccinated.
Baltimore City Public Schools (BCPSS) requires that each student be up-to-date on their vaccines to attend school. However, a significant number of students do not meet this requirement and continue to fall behind on their childhood vaccines. Multiple factors cause this gap including lack of transportation, long appointment times, provider shortage and distrust in providers. The onset of the COVID pandemic has significantly contributed to this disparity because many Baltimore City families have been unable to schedule routine well-child visits for their children. In addition, each non-compliant student costs BCPSS $7,000 per child in yearly funding.
The MWPH Community Benefit Program immediately recognized this need and stepped in to provide a solution, working tirelessly with Maryland Vaccines for Children and BCPSS to gather the number of students missing their childhood vaccines to attend school. At the clinics, physicians, nurses, educators, staff and board members selflessly volunteered hours of their time. Additionally, transportation was provided to families as well as translators for non-English speaking families to ensure this was not a barrier to access to care.
CHAB was formed to guide the MWPH Community Benefit program in planning, developing and implementing programs that improve health equity in the communities the hospital serves. CHAB members are selected from Baltimore City and Baltimore County community organizations, advocacy groups, elected officials and MWPH executive leadership.
“In just a few short years CHAB has had a major impact on the entire upper Park Heights community by partnering with many existing organizations and building programs through the area schools,” said Dr. Ed Perl, Medical Director of CHAB and Mt. Washington Pediatric Foundation board member. “Initially food and personal need supplies were regularly distributed, with a tremendous boost during the height of COVID. This was followed by these immunization clinics which secured an additional two million dollars for the area schools. Our newest pilot project will be providing telepsychology services directly to needy students from behavioral health providers at MWPH.”
“Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital’s mission is to maximize the health and independence of the children we serve,” shared Sheldon Stein, CEO and President of MWPH. “Our Community Benefit program endeavors to extend this mission to our community, and the leadership and partnerships created by CHAB are enabling us to do this with great success. Our team recognized the major benefits of providing immunization to Baltimore’s schoolchildren, and we are proud to have provided these clinics.”
About Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital: Where Children go to Heal and Grow
Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital provides family-focused, integrated care to children with serious, chronic or complex medical needs. Since 1922, the hospital has helped children heal from illness and injury, and now treats more than 8,500 patients each year. The 102-bed hospital is a jointly owned affiliate of the University of Maryland Medical System and Johns Hopkins Medicine and has locations in Baltimore City, Prince George’s County and in the community. For more information, please visit mwph.org.