Geriatric Emergency Care

The Emergency Department (ED) serves as a critical intersection of the healthcare system as it is often referred to as the “front porch,” where people are either admitted or discharged, setting the stage for the future of care.

The Opportunity

Early evidence from existing models of geriatric emergency care—ones that promote best clinical practices for older adults and create a more positive and sensitive physical environment, for example—shows they have the potential to improve health outcomes, better coordinate care, and reduce costs.

In 2016, we launched the Gary and Mary West Senior Emergency Care Unit at UC San Diego Health, where care tailored to the unique needs of seniors is being delivered for the first time in California.

Our Goals

We are identifying best practices in senior emergency care, building the evidence for geriatric emergency care protocols, connecting clinical and social resources to provide home and community-based care and addressing the training needs of a multidisciplinary workforce.

We are expanding our research portfolio to build evidence in support of a new vision for unplanned acute care, which fundamentally drives the majority of healthcare costs for our nation’s vulnerable seniors. We envision more proactive, opportunistic care that is delivered in place, whenever possible. Working with our collaborators at The John A. Hartford Foundation and the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), we are working to increase the number of senior-friendly EDs through ACEP’s national accreditation program, and we created the “Practical Guide to Implementing a Geriatric Emergency Department,” with UC San Diego Health to serve as a blueprint for other health systems to follow.

Taking Action

Gary and Mary West provided $11.8 million to the University of California San Diego to create a state-of-the-art senior emergency care unit housed within the emergency department at the new Jacobs Medical Center in La Jolla, CA.


The John A. Hartford Foundation

The John A. Hartford Foundation invests in aging experts and practice innovations that transform how the care of older adults is delivered. Since 1982, The John A. Hartford Foundation has awarded more than $565 million in grants to enhance the health and well-being of older people.

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Mount Sinai Health System

The Mount Sinai Health System is an integrated health care system providing exceptional medical care to our local and global communities.

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UC San Diego Health

UC San Diego Health is committed to creating a healthier world – one life at a time – through new science, new medicine and new cures.

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American College of Emergency Physicians

The American College of Emergency Physicians promotes the highest quality of emergency care and is the leading advocate for emergency physicians, their patients, and the public.

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Geriatric Emergency Care News

The San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency’s Aging & Independence Services presented its Aging Roadmap to the Board of Supervisors last week.
The Emergency Department at Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center recently received Level 1 accreditation from the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation (GEDA) program.
Phelps Hospital’s Emergency Department achieved Level 3 Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation (GEDA), from the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) with support from the Gary and Mary West Health Institute and John A. Hartford Foundation.
You care for this patient every shift. An older person with multiple medical problems who is trying to live at home. Are they normally slightly confused?
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