The Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology in the Department of Medicine
Directed by Dr. Joseph G. Ouslander, M.D., the Division has programs at Wesley Woods Center, the Atlanta VA Medical Center, Grady Hospital, a variety of community-based long-term care facilities, and two hospice programs. The Division has 18 full time faculty physician positions; 10 at Wesley Woods Center, 7 at the Atlanta VA, and one at Grady Hospital. In addition, 3 Ph.D.s hold their primary appointments in the Division. Each year the Division trains 4-6 fellows and 24 rotating medical residents at Wesley Woods Hospital. Major foci of research in the Division include: improving function and quality of life among frail, cognitively impaired nursing home residents; urinary incontinence and nocturia; sleep disorders; fall and injury prevention; and androgen therapy in older men.
Wesley Woods Center of Emory University
Wesley Woods Center is located on a 72-acre campus adjacent to Emory University, approximately 1 mile from the medical school and 2 miles from the Atlanta VAMC. It is among the most unique clinical and academic geriatric centers in the country. Since 1998 Wesley Woods has been a formal component of Emory University and Emory Healthcare. The campus includes: an independent living tower with two floors of assisted living (total of 220 residents); two nursing homes with a total of 370 residents; a variety of outpatient clinics including a primary care geriatric practice, neurology, psychiatry and rehabilitation medicine clinics; and the 100-bed Wesley Woods Geriatric Teaching and Research Hospital, which is comprised of acute medicine, psychiatry, rehabilitation, and neuropsychiatry units. Specialty programs include dementia, late-life depression, movement disorders, sleep disorders, and continence. Wesley Woods affiliates include a variety of community-based programs such as assisted living facilities, visiting nurse home care, day care centers, and hospices. Faculty in Geriatric Medicine, Psychiatry, Neurology, and Pathology have their primary offices on the Wesley Woods campus. These faculty are involved in a variety of research projects funded by federal agencies, foundations, and industry. Trainees in each of these areas rotate at Wesley Woods on a variety of inpatient and outpatient rotations.
The Atlanta VAMC Geriatrics and Extended Care Service, directed by Dr. Ted Johnson, includes seven full-time faculty, a 100-bed nursing home, a home-based primary care program, a consult service, and outpatient clinics. There are two geriatric medicine fellows rotating on these clinical services. In addition to these clinical teaching services, geriatric and gerontological research is conducted in the Birmingham/Atlanta Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center (GRECC) and the Atlanta VA Rehabilitation R&D Center.
b. Birmingham/Atlanta Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center (GRECC)
The Birmingham/Atlanta GRECC is the most recently funded in the VA GRECC program. The GRECC is directed by Dr. Richard Allman at UAB, with Dr. Ted Johnson serving as the Atlanta site director. It has two primary foci: genitourinary disorders, and mobility disorders. A variety of research will be developed in these two focus areas. Genitourinary disorders and mobility assessment clinics are being established at both VA sites using common protocols and databases. These clinics will provide the infrastructure for developing clinical trials and training programs in the GRECC focus areas. The GRECC is also developing clinical, training, and research activities in the area of palliative care.
c. Atlanta VA Rehabilitation R & D Center
The Rehab R&D Center at the Atlanta VAMC was designated as one of four nationwide in 1989. Since its inception this Center’s research has focused on aging and disability. The Center’s core budget is used to support developmental projects, student and junior investigators, and a variety of core functions, such as data management and dissemination. In addition to its core funding, Center investigators conduct a variety of VA and non-VA funded projects. Research focuses on improving the function and quality of life of older adults with vision impairment.
Grady Geriatrics Center
The Grady Geriatrics Center (GGC) directed by Dr.Jonathan Flacker, is located at Grady Hospital, the public hospital for two counties in metropolitan Atlanta. The GGC has recently located into new, purpose-built clinical space. Clinical programs include Outpatient Geriatric Consultation, Geriatric Primary Care, Memory Disorders Clinic, and Senior Foot Care Services. The GGC has also initiated a Home-Based Primary Care Program. Education contributions of the GCC include a regular opportunity for Emory Medical Residents, and Nurse Practitioner Students to rotate through the outpatient consultation and primary care clinics. In addition to serving as teaching attendings on Medicine Wards, GGC faculty are also regular contributors to the Emory Medical Resident outpatient lecture series.
Southeast Center of Excellence in Geriatric Medicine (SCEGM)
The SCEGM, supported by the John A. Hartford Foundation, is a collaboration between the programs in Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology at Emory and UAB. Dr. Ouslander serves as its co-director along with his counterpart at UAB, Dr. Richard Allman. The SCEGM was funded in January 1998, with matching support from UAB, Emory, and Wesley Woods. The primary goal of this Center is to provide support for fellows pursuing careers in academic Geriatric Medicine and junior faculty, and support for pilot projects in aging and Geriatrics.
The Emory Center for Health in Aging
The Center for Health in Aging was established in January 2001 to develop interdisciplinary research, health professional training, and community educational programs in aging and Geriatrics in order to help people age in healthy, affordable, ethical, and enjoyable ways. The Center broadly disseminates research findings and educational materials to health professionals, policy makers, and the public in an effort to improve the quality of care and quality of life for our aging society. The Center reflects Emory’s commitment to the importance and effectiveness of interdisciplinary collaborations in the field of aging. The Center is devoted to the co-equal missions of research, health professional training, and community education in order to enhance the clinical care provided to older adults and throughout Emory Healthcare. Areas of research include: patient safety in long-term care; the interrelationships of geriatric nocturia, incontinence, sleep disturbances, and quality of life; and infections and immunology in frail older patients. Collaborations between the university and community agencies focused on aging are also being developed. The Center’s health professional training programs include the Reynolds Program to Strengthen Physician Training in Geriatrics, and the Southeast Consortium for Long Term Care Quality. The Reynolds Program, supported by a $2 million grant from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation and institutional support, will provide innovative training in Geriatrics to medical students, residents, and faculty throughout the School of Medicine.