I have very sad news. Barbara Starfield, professor of Health Policy and Management, died Friday evening of an apparent heart attack while swimming-an activity that she dearly loved.
Our School has lost one of its great leaders. Barbara was a giant in the field of primary care and health policy who mentored many of us. Her work led to the development of important methodological tools for assessing diagnosed morbidity burden and had worldwide impact. She was steadfast in her belief that a quality primary care system is critical to the future of health care in this country and worldwide and received numerous accolades for her work in this important area.
Barbara came to Johns Hopkins in 1959 as a fellow in pediatrics at the School of Medicine. She joined our School in 1962 where she earned her MPH in epidemiology. As professor, she went on to lead the Division of Health Policy in the Department of Health Policy and Management from 1975 to 1994. After stepping down as Division head, Barbara remained an active member of the HPM faculty and was founding director of the Primary Care Policy Center. She was named Distinguished University Professor in 1994. Barbara was greatly admired as a teacher, mentor and colleague.
I am sure that I speak for all of us when I say that my deepest sympathies are with Tony Holtzman–Barbara’s husband, her four children, her eight grandchildren, as well her many friends and colleagues around the world.
We’ll provide information about funeral arrangements and a memorial service when they are available.
Michael J. Klag, MD, MPH
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health