Appointment Information

The Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center provides care to patients with inflammatory arthritis with a focus on the care of rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis.  The Arthritis Center physicians see patients primarily at the Johns Hopkins Bayview Campus and at our Good Samaritan location, and a smaller contingent are seen at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Our physicians review the records of each perspective patient to determine if the Arthritis Center is the most appropriate location in our various clinics for initial evaluation and treatment.  Therefore it is very important that referral letters from physicians detail the complaints and specific reason for the referral and include the results of prior evaluations that have been performed.

After your records have been reviewed, you will receive a phone call and a packet of information that provides additional information concerning your visit. We may send your referral to another clinic if this is more appropriate for your care.

Appointments for the Arthritis Center can be made by calling (410) 550-8089 between 9am and 3pm Monday through Friday.

If you are a new patient, the following is needed from you to schedule an appointment:

  • A referral letter from your physician.
  • Medical records from all treating physicians and/or past rheumatologist records and/or hospital discharge summaries.
  • Recent laboratory results
  • Any X-rays, MRI, CT Scans, Bone scan, or DEXA (Bone density) reports

This information should be faxed to 410-550-5601 or mailed to Penny Athanasiou, Patient Care Coordinator, Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center, 5501 Hopkins Bayview Circle AAC-1B, Baltimore, MD 21224.

If you are a new patient, you need to bring the following items to your first visit:

  • Please arrive 30 minutes before your appointment to allow time for registration, completion of additional forms, and vital signs.
  • Bring a copy of your insurance cards and any required referrals or authorizations for you to be seen.
  • Please bring the actual X-Ray, MRI, CT Scan images that have been done on your joints at the time of the visit.
  • Completed Patient History Form (PDF) – Get Adobe Acrobat Reader
  • Please complete this form in its entirety before your visit and bring it with you to your first visit

If you are a returning patient:

  • Please arrive 15-20 minutes before your appointment.
  • You may also need to complete some additional forms to allow us to bill your insurance, to review your health, and help us know how you have been doing since your last visit.
  • Bring a copy of your insurance cards.

Education in the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center

We are committed to ensuring that you are knowledgeable about your arthritis condition and are equipped with the best information to make good health decisions.  We have many materials available on our arthritis center website, many educational brochures available in our clinics, and have additional links to information in our website.  We also have an Arthritis Education nurse in our clinic who is available for appointments to provide additional teaching, education concerning medications, injections, and infusions. We hope that you, as our patients, will become advocates for arthritis and will help us in teaching your friends, colleagues, and family about arthritis and the tremendous need to continued research in this area.

Research in the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center

The research mission of the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center and the Division of Rheumatology is to investigate and discover the causes, treatments, and hopefully cures for different types of arthritis and autoimmune diseases.  We believe that our patients are our most important teachers about these conditions. We have many active research protocols ongoing that track the progress of our patients some of which collect additional blood samples that our bench research collaborators use to understand the causes of disease.  We also offer several studies looking at issues such as adherence to medications, weight loss, yoga, and physical activity as they relate to pain and outcomes.  We also offer many clinical trials of existing and emerging therapies for the treatment of arthritis. For this reason you may be approached by members of our research staff to determine your interest in participation. Your participation in research studies is always completely voluntary.  If you decide not to participate, be assured that this will not affect your medical care at Johns Hopkins in any way.

What Will Happen during Your Initial Visit

We will ask you to complete questionnaires regarding your health before your visit and possibly on the day of your visit. During your visit, you will be seen by one or more members of our rheumatology team. Johns Hopkins is a teaching institution, thus there may be Residents, Fellows, and Physicians-in-training involved in your evaluation.  All patients will also be seen by one of our Attending Board-certified Rheumatologists from the Arthritis Center.

We will carefully review your medical history, medical records, X-rays and MRI scans that you bring with you. We also will conduct a physical exam including examination of the joints, and may also recommend specialized blood or urine tests or additional X-rays.  Because of the comprehensive nature of this evaluation, you should plan to be in the clinic for at least 2 hours.

What Will Happen at the End of Your Visit?

After carefully reviewing your history, physical examination, and prior medical records, recommendations for further evaluation and/or treatments will be discussed with you.  Depending of the nature of these recommendations, you may be referred back to your primary care physician for further management, referred for care outside of the Rheumatology Clinic, or asked to return for ongoing care in the Arthritis Center.  We will provide a copy of the dictated medical record to the referring physician and to other care providers that you designate that will summarize our findings and recommendations made at your visit.  Please bring with you the names and addresses of the physicians to whom you wish this record to be provided.  This summary is carefully planned and reviewed, and may take days to two weeks to be generated.  At your visit, you will be provided with information on how to contact our staff and any additional instructions for your continued care.  Johns Hopkins Rheumatologists will be available to answer additional questions that may arise after your visit is over.

Rescheduling Appointments in the Arthritis Center and Cancellations:

Our clinic is very busy and unfortunately patients often have to wait several months for an appointment.  If you need to reschedule your appointment, please call us at 410 550-8089 (Bayview patients), or 443-444-4646 (Good Samaritan patients) as soon as possible. This will allow us to schedule another patient who is waiting to be seen.

Address, Directions, and Contact Information for the Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center:

Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center
5501 Hopkins Bayview Circle
Asthma and Allergy Center
Floor 1B
Baltimore, Maryland 21224
Phone: (410) 550-8089
FAX: (410) 550-5601
Directions on the Internet

Office Hours

The offices open at 8:00am-5:00pm, Monday through Friday, except Holidays. Our Arthritis Center physicians each see patients at different times in the different clinic locations. One of the Johns Hopkins Rheumatologists is available for urgent issues when the physicians are not themselves in the office.

Prescription Policies and Prescription Refills

Whenever possible we would like you to request prescription refills at the time of your routine office visits. If you are caught short, however, check with you pharmacy or read the Rx bottle to see if there are refills still available for the prescription.

Refills of routine prescriptions can usually be called in or faxed to your pharmacy.  We do not fill prescriptions over the weekend or holidays.  Many prescriptions require prior authorization by your insurance plan, and this may take several days to obtain.  Medical Assistance and certain pain medications and other “restricted substances” cannot be called or faxed in. If your medication falls into these categories, you will need to come in and pick up a written prescription to hand carry to the pharmacy or we will mail these prescriptions to you.

Please plan ahead and call 7 days before running out of your medications.  We will make every effort to refill your prescriptions as expeditiously as possible but many medications require prior authorization or other information to complete.

  • For the Bayview Clinic please call: 410-550-8089
  • For the Good Samaritan Clinic please call: 443-444-4646

If you call for a prescription refill, please leave the following information on the machine:

  • Your name
  • Your date of birth (we have many patients with the same name!)
  • The medication name
  • The medication dosage
  • How you are taking the medication (once daily, twice daily, etc.)
  • The quantity needed (one month or 3 month supply)
  • The pharmacy phone & fax number
  • The prescription number (if known)
  • A contact number where you can be reached DURING THE DAY (such as a cell phone) if we have questions

Updated: November 20, 2014

Arthritis Center

About Arthritis Center

Founded in 1998, the Arthritis Center at Johns Hopkins is dedicated to providing quality education to patients and healthcare providers alike.