Regional Health Network Collaborative Expands into More Care, Pulmonary Clinical Trials

Jan 18, 2020 | Allegheny, Collaborative, Johns Hopkins, Leading Sites, News, Site Success, Site Watch, Women's Health

Regional Health Network Collaborative Expands into More Care, Pulmonary Clinical Trials

Major health systems have joined forces in a multi-therapeutic area focused collaborative, centering on the Allegheny Health Network (AHN), creating one of the largest coordinated women’s gynecologic and obstetrical health research programs in the United States. Along with Highmark Health and Johns Hopkins Medicine, the AHN led group will focus not only on gynecologic care and maternal-fetal medicine but also on the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and lung transplantation. Representing an unprecedented move offering AHN patients with streamlined access to hundreds of clinical trials, second opinions, and specialized treatments for rare and complex conditions.

Built on Success Partnership

AHN and Johns Hopkins have been collaborating for five years to offer cancer patients in the greater Pittsburgh region with more seamless access to second opinions and clinical trials testing new therapies at Hopkins. The relationship moreover, helps clinicians at both institutions to share knowledge and consulting on patient care.

Expanding Regional Care for Bigger Impact

The organizations are coming together with a common framework for collaboration and coordination centering on gynecologic and obstetrical women’s health research, heretofore not possible data collaboration and aggregation of tens of thousands of patient interactions including deliveries, gynecologic surgeries, and ambulatory visits, to further study common conditions and improve practice standards.

Women’s Health

Expectant women being cared for by AHN will have streamlined access to the Johns Hopkins Center for Fetal Therapy, a world-renowned program for diagnosing and treating rare and complex fetal conditions in the womb. The team at Johns Hopkins uses innovative fetoscopic surgical techniques—access the fetus through a small incision—to treat potentially life-threatening complications of pregnancy, including congenital diaphragmatic hernia, spina bifida, complicated monochorionic twins, and bladder obstruction. AHN specialists in obstetrics, maternal-fetal medicine, neonatology, and pediatrics will work with the St. Johns Hopkins team to meet the comprehensive health needs of patients.

Research Focus

The pulmonology collaboration between AHN and Johns Hopkins will be research-focused, with the two institutions conducting joint research on precision medicine approaches for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The disease affects about three million patients in the United States each year, with an estimated 12 million additional cases that are undiagnosed. 

Lung Transplantation

AHN patients with advanced lung disease now streamlined access to the Johns Hopkins lung transplant program, a pioneering leader in lung transplantation for nearly 25 years. 98% of Johns Hopkins’ lung transplant patients are alive with a functioning transplanted lung one-year post-surgery as compared to 89% nationwide, reports the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients. Johns Hopkins’ median time from the waitlist to transplant is 2.8 months, compared to an average of 3.1 months. Johns Hopkins offers navigation services for patients going through lung transplants.

Precision Analytics

Johns Hopkins Precision Medicine Analytics Platform will be utilized by both AHN and Johns Hopkins to study new approaches for the treatment of COPD, to identify the most effective treatments, and ultimately reduce hospitalization rates associated with the disease. Anil Singh, MD, Chair of Pulmonology at AHN, will lead the implementation partnership at AHN.


Andrew J. Satin, MD, Director, Johns Hopkins Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics reports “We are creating a community of collaborators in women’s health who are operationally integrated and programmatically focused on raising standards of excellence in patient care, research and education to benefit women of all ages and stages in life.”

The Allegheny Health Network

Part of Highmark Health, AHN is an integrated healthcare delivery system serving the Western Pennsylvania region. The network employs nearly 21,000 people and 2,500 staff and physicians.


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