Bridging the Workforce Gap for Our Aging Society: How to Increase and Improve Knowledge and Training. Report of an Expert Panel

Authors

  • Alice Mankin LaMascus MS,

    1. From the *University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma,
      Merck Institute of Aging and Health, Washington, DC,
      National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, Maryland
      §Division of Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Programs, Health Resources Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions, Rockville, Maryland.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Marie A. Bernard MD,

    1. From the *University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma,
      Merck Institute of Aging and Health, Washington, DC,
      National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, Maryland
      §Division of Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Programs, Health Resources Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions, Rockville, Maryland.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Patricia Barry MD, MPH,

    1. From the *University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma,
      Merck Institute of Aging and Health, Washington, DC,
      National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, Maryland
      §Division of Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Programs, Health Resources Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions, Rockville, Maryland.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Judith Salerno MD, MS,

    1. From the *University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma,
      Merck Institute of Aging and Health, Washington, DC,
      National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, Maryland
      §Division of Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Programs, Health Resources Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions, Rockville, Maryland.
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Joan Weiss PhD, RN, CRNP

    1. From the *University of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma,
      Merck Institute of Aging and Health, Washington, DC,
      National Institute on Aging, Bethesda, Maryland
      §Division of Interdisciplinary, Community-Based Programs, Health Resources Services Administration, Bureau of Health Professions, Rockville, Maryland.
    Search for more papers by this author

  • Funded by the Merck Institute on Aging and Health.

Marie A. Bernard, MD, Professor, Chairman, Reynolds Department of Geriatrics, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine & ACOS, Geriatrics and Extended Care, Oklahoma City VAMC, 921 NE 13th (11G), Oklahoma City, OK 73104. E-mail: marie-bernard@ouhsc.edu

Abstract

The healthcare workforce is currently unprepared for the increasing number of older persons and the complexities of their healthcare needs. Too few healthcare workers are adequately trained in geriatrics, and developers of educational curricula across healthcare disciplines have been slow to incorporate or require geriatric training. In April 2003, leaders in geriatrics met in Washington, D.C., to discuss and recommend solutions to the growing shortage of an appropriately trained workforce for geriatric research, education, and patient care. After considering data, presenting statistics, and offering insights into the future, the conference concluded by formulating recommendations to meet specific challenges. This report is a summary of the conference proceedings and recommendations, and it serves as a reminder that demographic trends and an everexpanding geriatric knowledge base demand not only attention, but also action.

Ancillary