In Baltimore City Hopkins to create health institute...



In Baltimore City

Hopkins to create health institute for urban problems

The Johns Hopkins University and Hospital announced yesterday that they will commit $4.5 million over five years to create an Urban Health Institute to tackle the health problems that vex East Baltimore.

The new institute will bring together health experts, community leaders, government officials and others to identify the most pressing issues, such as substance abuse and violence, and develop the best methods to address the problems.

The institute, one of the key recommendations of a 90-member council on urban health, will operate outside current university divisions. Most of its staff will be Hopkins faculty and staff. Dr. Thomas O'Toole, assistant professor of medicine at Hopkins, will be the institute's interim director until the national search for a permanent director is finished.

Man dies, two injured in two-alarm fire in city

A 43-year-old man died in a two-alarm fire in Baltimore about 10 p.m. yesterday after he apparently fell asleep with a lighted cigarette in a second-floor apartment above a corner saloon in the 3100 block of Greenmount Ave, police said.

The deceased was identified by the owner of the building as Mark Waters, who lived above the Northside Bar at the corner of Greenmount Avenue and 31st Street. A second person said to be a roommate of Waters, was taken to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center for smoke inhalation after the 10 p.m. fire. A third person was taken to Union Memorial Hospital, also for smoke inhalation.

A neighbor, who said he heard the victims "trying to stomp out the fire," called 911 before escaping the blaze. The fire department brought the fire under control at 10:26 p.m.

Celiac center to promote awareness of disease

The University of Maryland Center for Celiac Research launched a nationwide campaign yesterday to increase awareness of celiac disease, a genetic disorder that very few people know about. People with the disease can't eat foods that contain the protein gluten, which is found in wheat and other grains. The patients can suffer from severe intestinal problems.

Research showed that celiac disease may be one of the most common genetic disorders. Dr. Alessio Fasano, co-director of the center, found that as many as one in 150 Americans have the disease.

Fasano urges more testing, which involves a blood test and, for a final diagnosis, a biopsy. Celiac disease can be treated by avoiding all foods with gluten. Information: 1-800-492-5538 or go to

BARC employment center is set to open on July 18

A new employment center for the Baltimore Association for Retarded Citizens will open in the city's Seton Business Park with a ribbon-cutting at 5:30 p.m. July 18.

The $2.9 million, 32,000-square-foot center in Northwest Baltimore will house the janitorial and landscape services divisions of BARC's employment program.

Each year, BARC workers earn an estimated $4.5 million working for such organizations as the Johns Hopkins Health System and the American Visionary Art Museum. Information: 410-296-2272.In Baltimore County

Notre Dame Prep group to assist Mexican village

TOWSON - Eight pupils and three teachers from Notre Dame Preparatory School will travel to a Mayan village in Mexico this summer as part of an outreach program to help impoverished residents.

The pupils and their teachers will visit Cholul, Mexico, for about two weeks. They will tutor village residents in reading, math and English and will deliver clothes, shoes, and hygiene and health care products.

Information: 410-825-6202.

Community center to open in Turners Station today

DUNDALK - The $3 million Fleming Community Center in Turners Station, a historically black community in southeast Baltimore County, will open at 10 a.m. today in a ceremony led by County Executive C. A. Dutch Ruppersberger.

The 17,000-square-foot facility at 641 Main St. will house a county senior center, recreational programs operated by the county Department of Recreation and Parks, a Head Start center and the Turners Station Reading-Learning Center.

The senior center will offer blood pressure screenings, physical fitness activities, sewing, quilting, crafts, card and board games, and pool.

Science center schedules butterfly walk for children

STEVENSON - The Irvine Natural Science Center at St. Timothy's School will have a "butterfly walk" for children from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Thursday

Naturalist Erin Wisnieski will lead a walk around the science center's gardens and meadow to see butterflies in their habitat. The program is recommended for children ages 4 through 8.

The program costs $4 ($3 for science center members). Registration is required by Tuesday by calling 410-484-2413. The center is on Greenspring Avenue, north of Baltimore Beltway Exit 22.

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