Helping our neighbors, both local and global

Serving in varied capacities

Faculty, staff, and students in Emory's Woodruff Health Sciences Center are continually seeking new ways to help people in both the local and global community to get the care and information they need to live healthier lives.

Over the past year, hospitals within Emory Healthcare have gathered extensive data about the needs of the communities they serve to be able to focus resources where they are needed most.



From the Executive VP

Charity care in Emory Healthcare

Caring for the elderly

Caring for kids

Care at Grady Hospital

Emory and the Atlanta VA Medical Center

Serving locally and globally



Economic impact

Woodruff Health Sciences Center

Donating cord blood to save lives

Instead of discarding umbilical cord blood, mothers who give birth at Emory University Hospital Midtown (EUHM) can now donate it to a public cord blood bank based at the Cleveland Cord Blood Center in Ohio. Umbilical blood cells have the capacity to grow into new bone marrow cells, which can be used in life-saving transplants for patients with leukemia, sickle cell disease, and other blood disorders. Because of Atlanta's diverse population, the EUHM program is expected to make more diverse transplant options possible.

Teaching healthy living

In a new collaboration, Rollins School of Public Health (RSPH) students are paired with pre K-12 teachers in Teach for America, the national program that places college graduates in classrooms in underserved areas. The partnership deepens teachers' understanding of how health affects the lives of their students and how to teach them critical health skills. The students also are helping create a database teachers can use to develop lessons on nutrition, mental health, reproductive health, and other topics.

Growing the VA nursing workforce

Emory's Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing was one of six nursing schools nationwide selected this year to partner with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to train nurses to help address an anticipated nursing shortage in veterans care, which is expected to grow to 1 million RNs by 2025. The partnership funds additional faculty members and will increase Emory's undergraduate nursing class by 100 students over a five-year period. Students will participate in clinical rotations at the Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center and will engage in specialized training in mental health, traumatic brain injury care, home-based health care, palliative care, women's health, homeless care, and more. 

Increasing diabetes self-management

Thanks to a new partnership with Emory and other members of the Emory-led Atlanta Clinical & Translational Science Institute (ACTSI), the Big Bethel AME Church on Auburn Avenue now has more than 20 members trained and certified as health coaches. The coaches have already helped more than 100 fellow congregants with high-risk diabetes improve their diabetes-related self-management skills and behaviors. The health coaches helped congregants use a health skills web portal and social networking forum as well as a community-access kiosk to enhance health literacy. The coaching program is only one component of the ACTSI effort to work with the large church to provide a sustainable community-based resource for diabetes consultations, health screenings, and clinical research.

Engaging kids and teachers in research

Emory's Yerkes National Primate Research Center partnered with other researchers at Emory and Georgia State University to offer the 2013 Institute on Neuroscience for local high school students and middle and high school teachers. Three students and two teachers spent six weeks this past summer in neuroscience labs at Yerkes under the mentorship of Yerkes researchers. Participants had the opportunity to present their findings at the end of the program.

Getting kids excited about reading

Education, beginning with early childhood literacy, is a direct predictor of health, says Veda Johnson, executive director of the Emory Pediatrics Urban Health Program (UHP). Because low-income parents are less likely to read to their children, Johnson and colleagues like academic success coordinator Rhonda Hudson (pictured) are working with Reach Out and Read to distribute age-appropriate books at clinical and community sites in Atlanta's poorest neighborhoods. Improving academic success for Georgia's underserved children got another boost from the UHP this year, with creation of three new school-based health programs, bringing the total to nine, thanks to a grant from Healthcare Georgia Foundation. The school-based clinics improve children's health and school performance while reducing costs to the health care system.

Navigating the role of caregiver

The Emory Alzheimer's Disease Research Center and the Emory Center for Health in Aging partner with the Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority in the annual Registry for Remembrance, a community forum for family members of patients with Alzheimer's. Participants learn about community resources, ways to reduce caregiver stress, and new technologies to make patients' lives better.

Table of Contents

Community Benefits Report Cover 2012