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Healing Hurt People

2017 Award for Professional Innovation in Victim Services | National Crime Victims’ Service Awards
Watch the tribute video

Healing Hurt People | Award for Professional Innovation in Victim Services
Team Members: Dr. Theodore Corbin; Dr. John Rich
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Healing Hurt People (HHP) is the cornerstone program of the Center for Nonviolence and Social Justice. HHP is a community-focused, hospital-based program designed to reduce re-injury and retaliation among victims of violence in Philadelphia, most of whom are boys and men of color aged 8–30. HHP employs a trauma-informed approach, which takes into account the adversity that clients have experienced over their lifetime and recognizes that addressing this trauma is critical to breaking the cycle of violence. 

The HHP model was developed at Drexel University by Dr. Theodore Corbin, an emergency physician, and Dr. John Rich, a public health expert and general internist. In 2008, HHP began serving clients at Drexel-Hahnemann and has since expanded to serve victims aged 8–30 in four additional emergency departments across the city: Einstein Medical Center, Penn Presbyterian, St. Christopher’s, and Temple Hospital. 

Since 2007, HHP has provided intervention for over 1,800 victims of violence and support to many more families affected by violence. HHP has gained significant national attention and is a leader in the movement to end violence using a public health approach. HHP serves as a member of the National Network of Hospital-based Violence Intervention Programs, and the HHP model has already been replicated in hospitals in Portland, Oregon, and Chicago, Illinois. 

Currently, rigorous and innovative multisite research is underway to assess HHP’s long-term impact on reinjury, retaliation, trauma symptoms, and involvement with criminal justice system. Early findings from this study have shown promising reductions in trauma symptoms among program participants.

2017 National Crime Victims' Service Awards Tribute Video

Watch this video to learn more about Healing Hurt People, 2017 recipient of the National Crime Victim Service Award.