The Drexel University School of Public Health, in partnership with the Drexel University College of Medicine and Hahnemann Hospital, has established the Center for Nonviolence and Social Justice with more than $1M in grants. The Center focuses on trauma as a public health issue and provides a program of healing for victims of violence.
The center is designed to help provide the social and support services for patients who were treated for trauma, such as intentional injury, and are being released from the hospital. Started with funding by the Thomas Scattergood Behavioral Health Foundation and California Endowment, additional funding for the center and its programs was provided by the Blueprint for a Safer Philadelphia, Claneil Foundation and the Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health.
Creating a treatment program called "Healing Hurt People," staff at the Center follow a trauma-informed approach to treating those impacted by violence. This type of care looks at the trauma that the patient has dealt with over the course of many years or even a lifetime. Rather than use traditional punitive measures, the strategy is to provide needed social and care services to help break the cycle of violence.
For instance, when a patient comes into the emergency department at Hahnemann Hospital, care providers from the center will meet with the patient. They will work together to see if the patient needs insurance, job training, legal support, substance abuse treatment, food assistance and other type of social services.
Leading efforts for the Center is Dr. John A. Rich, chair of the Department of Health Management and Policy and 2006 MacArthur Foundation grant recipient, who serves as the program’s associate medical director. Dr. Theodore Corbin, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at the Drexel University College of Medicine, is the medical director. Additional staff at the Center includes Linda Rich, MA, the program’s research director, and Dr. Sandra Bloom, an adjunct professor at the School of Public Health, is the program associate. Ann Wilson is the newly hired coordinator, and Solomon Evans serves as the research associate. Additional staff members include Dionne Delgado, the injury prevention coordinator.