JOHNS HOPKINS HEALTH SYSTEM, MEDICINE FORM NEW ALLIANCE In a historic move, the leadership of the Johns Hopkins Health System and The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine have taken formal steps to integrate their functions in the delivery of health care. The new alliance will operate under the title "Johns Hopkins Medicine." Although legally they will retain separate corporate status, the Johns Hopkins Health System and the School of Medicine expect to maximize opportunities for both institutions through the new collaboration. In a joint statement, James A. Block, president and CEO of the health system and the hospital, and Michael E. Johns, dean of the School of Medicine and vice president for medicine of the university, described the formation of the new alliance. "Over the past year, we have begun to use the term 'Johns Hopkins Medicine' when referring to the delivery of health care by physicians affiliated with the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in settings organized by the Johns Hopkins Health System. Implicit in the term is a sense of shared values and mission, yet, legally, the health system and the university are two separate corporations," the statement said. "To survive and thrive in today's environment, we must have a framework to ensure that Johns Hopkins Medicine functions in a seamless fashion to deal with these changes. Our two organizations must work harmoniously, synchronously and swiftly to develop and implement unified, creative strategies. Only in this way will we maintain our positions of leadership and preeminence. "Within the past few weeks, the board of the health system and the board of the university both approved 'Johns Hopkins Medicine' as a formal alliance to ensure that we function in a much more coordinated fashion than we have in the past. While maintaining our separate corporate structures, we have established joint policy, management and operational groups. "Johns Hopkins Medicine seeks to develop strategic alliances, affiliations and associations. The product of this initiative should be a tightly linked health-care financing and delivery system that provides the highest quality health care. Already, we have begun working together to forge new alliances with managed-care organizations and with community hospitals in every Central Maryland county. One Office of Managed Care now coordinates the managed-care activities of the hospital and university." A five-member group will oversee the functions of the alliance. The group is comprised of the chairmen of the university and health system boards, the president of the university, the president of the health system and the dean of the School of Medicine. In an appointment that illustrates the new joint working relationship, John D. Stobo has been named vice dean for clinical sciences of the School of Medicine, associate vice president for medicine of the university and vice president of the health system. A Massachusetts native who received much of his postdoctoral training at Hopkins, Dr. Stobo, 52, returned to Hopkins as physician in chief in 1985, after achieving leadership positions at the University of California at San Francisco and at the Mayo Clinic. He is an immunologist whose research has advanced scientific understanding of arthritis, diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease and autoimmune disorders. In 1993 Dr. Stobo was named senior associate dean for clinical science of the School of Medicine. Officials of the university and health system appointed him chairman of an ad hoc committee on security, which spearheaded major improvements on the East Baltimore campus. To assume his responsibilities, Dr. Stobo has relinquihed his role as William Osler Professor and director of the Department of Medicine. David Hellmann, the Department of Medicine's deputy director, will serve as the department's acting director until a search committee completes its work.
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