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Johns Hopkins School of Nursing Launches New Institute for Policy Solutions to Redesign U.S. Health System

Institute will promote and advance evidence-based, actionable nurse-led solutions that prioritize health equity and whole-person care  

WASHINGTON DC, November 2, 2023—Yesterday, the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing (JHSON) launched its new Institute for Policy Solutions in Washington, DC. The Institute will work with health policy leaders, innovators and researchers to redesign the U.S. health system by elevating, developing and implementing evidence-based, actionable nurse-led solutions. Its goal is to shift policy and practice toward more preventive, value-based and whole-person care approaches, away from primarily treatment-focused care. A focus on eliminating racist policies and structures entrenched in the country’s health care establishment and other systems that impact people’s ability to be healthy (housing, education, workforce, etc.) will underpin the Institute’s work.  

“No matter who you are or where you live, you deserve the opportunity for a healthy life. Despite spending more on health care than any other high-income nation, this opportunity is not afforded to far too many people in the United States. The Institute aims to change that,” said Institute for Policy Solutions Director Vincent Guilamo-Ramos, PhD, MPH, LCSW, RN. He continued, “We must move away from putting band-aids on the critical health care challenges we face. Nurses are key to driving effective solutions: We have expertise in the strengths, needs and perspectives of the families and communities we serve.”  

Nurses are the oxygen of the health system. With their flexibility, teamwork, care coordination, cultural responsiveness and humility, and clinical expertise, nurses are trusted partners to others working to improve health. And they are leaders in creating innovative models of care that have the potential of scaling to statewide, regional or national initiatives.  

Three, among many, cutting-edge examples of nurse-led models that put people at the center, directing their own care, are Neighborhood Nursing, CAPABLE, and the Nurse-Community-Family Partnership.   

  • Neighborhood Nursing: In this new pilot program based in Maryland, nurses collaborate with community health workers and others to establish relationships with people block-to-block and family-to-family, so they truly understand the health needs of a community in order to prevent illness, build social connections and improve overall health. The goal is to ensure that all people can obtain what they need and what they want to better manage their health and overall well-being.   
  • CAPABLE: Older adults collaborate with a nurse, an occupational therapist and a handy worker to set actionable goals and modify their housing to age with dignity in their communities. The evidence is clear: CAPABLE decreases hospitalizations and nursing home stays and provides more than seven times return on investment. Roughly $3,000 in program costs per participant yields more than $22,000 in savings in medical costs driven by reductions in both inpatient and outpatient expenditures.  
  • Nurse-Community-Family Partnership (NCFP): NCFP emerged from a national, NIH-led effort to strengthen community-engaged responses to the inequitable impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. NCFP is a nurse-led, community-based intervention that leverages individual, family, institutional and systems factors to shape COVID-19 mitigation outcomes and well-being at the individual and household levels, including COVID-19 testing, vaccine uptake and family mutual aid. NCFP is based on the principles of the nurse-led model of care, delivers care in the home via interdisciplinary nurse-community health worker teams and takes an approach focused on comprehensive mitigation of harmful social determinants of health.  

“Nurse-led solutions work. The evidence bears it out – they expand access, lower costs and most importantly, improve people’s lives. We must seize this moment that is ripe for transformation and ensure that those at the forefront of policy change embrace the role of nurse-led models to solve some of our health care system’s biggest challenges,” said JHSON Dean Sarah Szanton, PhD, RN, FAAN.   

See photos from the launch event here. See more innovative nursing-led stories here


The Institute for Policy Solutions at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing is a place where research, evidence, innovation and thought leadership unite to shape policies for a healthy future. Through evidence-based, actionable nurse-led solutions, the Institute will move policy and practice away from sick care toward preventive and whole-person care. Trusted by the public and decision-makers, nurses will serve as strategic experts and change agents in redesigning the U.S. health care system. For more information, please visit instituteforpolicysolutions.org.  

Located in Baltimore, the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing (JHSON) is a globally recognized leader in nursing education, research and practice. U.S. News & World Report ranks JHSON No. 1 nationally for its DNP program and No. 2 for its master’s program, while QS World University ranks it No. 3 among nursing schools worldwide. The school is a six-time recipient of the INSIGHT Into Diversity Health Professions Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award and a five-time recipient of the Best School for Men in Nursing Award. For more information, please visit www.nursing.jhu.edu.  


Abby Manishor
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