Baylor takes part in national ‘Age-Friendly Health Systems’ initiative

Baylor College of Medicine announced that it is part of a movement to improve healthcare for older adults called the Age-Friendly Health Systems initiative. Baylor Medicine, the primary multidisciplinary clinical practice of Baylor College of Medicine, is joining this national movement to focus not only on health issues in older adults but on ‘What Matters Most’ to them.

As part of the Age-Friendly Health Systems initiative, the John A. Hartford Foundation and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), in partnership with the American Hospital Association and the Catholic Health Association of the United States, are helping hospitals and other care settings implement a set of evidence-based interventions specifically designed to improve care for older adults.

Baylor now joins more than 1,900 hospitals and healthcare practices nationwide working to make care for older adults even more tailored to patients’ goals and preferences and consistently of high-quality. The IHI recognized Baylor Medicine’s General Internal Medicine Clinic, Family Medicine Clinic – Upper Kirby, Family Medicine Clinic – River Oaks, Family Medicine Clinic – Texas Medical Center, and Stratos Integrated Health as Age-Friendly Health System Participants.

Dr. Kathryn Agarwal, assistant professor of medicine – geriatrics at Baylor, worked with the leadership teams of the clinics on this program, including Dr. Daniel Murphy, assistant professor – medical director in the Department of Medicine at Baylor; Dr. Mohamad Sidani, professor and vice chair – clinical services at Baylor; and Dr. Marc Feldman, assistant professor of family and community medicine and orthopedic surgery at Baylor.

“I am so excited that Baylor Medicine is leading the way in making sure that every day, every older adult receives age-friendly healthcare. Our primary care clinics have made this commitment to work on further improving the care they provide to older adults,” Agarwal said.

The initiative is based on a series of practices focused on addressing four essential elements of care for older patients:

  • What Matters: Know and align care with each older adult’s specific health outcome goals and care preferences including, but not limited to, end-of-life care, and across settings of care.
  • Medication: If medication is necessary, use age-friendly medication across care settings that do not interfere with what matters to the older adult or to their mobility and mentation.
  • Mentation: Prevent, identify, treat and manage dementia, depression and delirium across settings of care.
  • Mobility: Ensure that older adults move safely every day in order to maintain function and have the ability to do what matters to them.
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