In the United States, we have many healthcare resources at our fingertips – but guess what is a scarce resources? Geriatricians and geriatric-trained healthcare providers – in 2015, there were less than 7,500?- as our population heads straight into a “Silver Tsunami” and we will have more older adults on the plant than children for the first time in human history. And the number of geriatricians has steadily declined given the specialty has the lowest salary for all physicians, persistent ageism, and the amount of time it takes (30-45 minutes per visit) during a medical appointment to investigate and then put all of the pieces together for an older adult’s plan of care.
There is only one federal program aimed to develop a workforce capable of providing the specialized, quality care that older adults need during a time of life when they are their most vulnerable: the Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program or GWEP for those “in the know”.
In April 2017, the American Geriatric Society and in May 2017, the Eldercare Workforce Alliance (EWA) submitted testimony to support appropriations for GWEP for Fiscal Year 2018. For more information on how you can support the GWEP program and advocate for resources to grow the geriatric health professional workforce in the U.S., check out EWA’s Toolkit, published in March 2017.
Tonight’s Guests include:
- Dr. Denise Mohess, MD; Medical Director of Geriatrics, Inova Fairfax Hospital
- Susan Heisey, MSW, LCSW, ASW-G; Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) Coordinator, Inova Fairfax Hospital
- Mark Kassab, BA, BS; Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) Specialist
- Dr. Mohess also discusses a new program, No One Dies Alone
Show originally aired July 17, 2017