Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University

Plumb, James

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Plumb, James

James D. Plumb, MD, MPH

Contact Dr. Plumb

211 South 9th Street
Suite 300
Philadelphia, PA 19107

(215) 955-6340
(215) 955-7529 fax


MD, Jefferson Medical College
MPH, Johns Hopkins University
BA, University of Virginia


Thomas Jefferson University Hospital

Board Certification

Family Practice

University Appointments

Professor, Department of Family & Community Medicine, Sidney Kimmel Medical College
Vice Chair, Community Medicine, Sidney Kimmel Medical College
Co-Director, Center for Urban Health, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital

Research and Practice Interests

Community-Centered Health Home
Substance Abuse
Homeless Care
Prison and Post-Release Care
Cardiovascular Disease Disparities
Medical/Public Health Educational Programming


Introduction to Public Health
Social & Behavioral Foundations in Public Health


A 1969 Honors graduate of the University of Virginia and a 1974 Alpha Omega Alpha graduate of Jefferson Medical College, Dr. Jim Plumb joined the Thomas Jefferson University Family Medicine Residency Program in 1974, then served as Residency Director from 1977 to 1982. In 2003, he received his Master of Public Health from the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University.

Since 1995, Dr. Plumb has maintained a clinical practice in Lower North Philadelphia in partnerhsip with Project H.O.M.E, which serves uninsured and formerly homeless individuals. This site serves as a Clerkship and elective site for medical students interested in population health. Since 1992, he has served as Faculty Advisor for a student-run Urban Health Initiative (Jeff HOPE) addressing healthcare needs of the homeless and otherwise disenfranchised populations at four shelters and a needle exchange in the city in which 80% of Jefferson's students participate as providers in five weekly clinic sites.

In 2002, Dr. Plumb helped initiate the Thomas Jefferson University Hospital Center for Urban Health and has fostered partnerships with organizations serving five underserved, diverse neighborhoods. Together with its partners, the Center has received over $11 million in grants and contracts to date that have supported innovative community-based public health programs.

For the past eight years, Dr. Plumb has been involved in the Rwanda Health and Healing Project in Gisenyi, Rwanda and served as a visiting lecturer at the National University of Rwanda in Butare. He has also developed an exchange program involving Rwandan medical school students coming to Jefferson to experience the interface between medical and public health education. To date, 28 students from Rwanda have spent two months at Jefferson and more than 100 students have traveled to Rwanda.

Dr. Plumb currently serves on the Board of the Section of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at the Philadelphia College of Physicians, the Philadelphia Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility and the Public Health Committee of the Philadelphia County Medical Society.

Dr. Plumb currently is directing a curricular initiative at Jefferson to develop a four year-long longitudinal scholarly area of concentration in population health for medical students.

His research interests include substance abuse, homeless care, prison and post-release care, cardiovascular disease disparities and medical/public health educational programming.

Dr. Plumb has received many honors for his work, including the Liberty Bell Award from the Philadelphia Bar Association, the IMPACT Award with Jeff HOPE from Smith-Kline Beecham and the American Association of Medical College's Humanism in Medicine Award. In 2004 he was selected by Jefferson students for the Exemplar in Humanism Award and by the Philadelphia County Medical Society as Practitioner of the Year. In 2010 he received the Jefferson Medical College Dean's Community Service Award and the Faculty Achievement Award.

In 2012 Dr. Plumb received the Elizabeth Hurley Beckman Award, given to "teachers who have inspired their former students to make a difference in their communities." The award is given to ten current or former academic faculty members nationally who have inspired their former students to "create an organization which has demonstrably conferred a benefit on the community at large."


Most Recent Peer-Reviewed Publications

  1. Health Literacy: Cancer Prevention Strategies for Early Adults
  2. Envisioning home: The philadelphia refugee mental health photovoice project as a story of effective relationship building
  3. Endgame for polio eradication? Options for overcoming social and political factors in the progress to eradicating polio
  4. Type 2 diabetes in a rapidly urbanizing region of Ghana, West Africa: A qualitative study of dietary preferences, knowledge and practices
  5. Using accreditation standards as a framework to evaluate and improve a community-based diabetes self-management education program
  6. Stage of Change and Other Predictors of Participant Retention in a Behavioral Weight Management Program in Primary Care
  7. A primary care-public health partnership addressing homelessness, serious mental illness, and health disparities
  8. The Use of International Service Learning Initiatives for Global Health Education: Case Studies From Rwanda and Mexico
  9. Community-Based Partnerships for Improving Chronic Disease Management
  10. Trial of a behavioral intervention to increase dilated fundus examinations in African-Americans aged over 65 years with diabetes
  11. JeffHOPE: The Development and Operation of a Student-Run Clinic
  12. Obesity and Cancer
  13. Modifiable cardiovascular risk factors among individuals in low socioeconomic communities and homeless shelters
  14. The interplay of obesity and asthma
  15. The social and behavioral foundations of men's health - A public health perspective
  16. Community engagement of men
  17. The asthma and obesity epidemics: The role played by the built environment - A public health perspective
  18. Experience with hospice: Reflections from third-year medical students
  19. The role of life-prolonging technology
  20. Homelessness: Reducing health disparities