Gerontology Degrees

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WHY GERONTOLOGY?

In the next half century, the older adult population in the United States is projected to more than double in size — from 31 million to over 72 million. Older adults have very complex healthcare needs, however the majority of clinicians are not trained specifically to care for an aging population. Increased numbers of advanced practice nurses who are able to provide leadership and high-quality care to this growing and potentially vulnerable population are urgently needed. 

Check out the Administration on Aging website for more information about Figure 1 and the profile of older Americans.

 

PROGRAMS IN GERONTOLOGICAL NURSING

The School of Nursing is nationally known for its strength in practice-relevant gerontological nursing education and research in a number of areas, including healthy aging, dementia care, family care giving, and end-of-life care. During the past two decades, gerontological nursing faculty at OHSU have developed pioneering education, practice, and research projects that benefit older adults and those who care for them. The OHSU School of Nursing and Hartford Center of Gerontological Excellence (HCGE) are pleased to offer the following innovative educational programs that enhance capacity to serve older adults.

 

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MS/MN IN NURSING EDUCATION WITH AN EMPHASIS IN GERONTOLOGICAL NURSING

The OHSU Master of Nursing Education program with specialization in gerontological nursing began accepting students in 2007. This program is designed for the bachelor’s prepared nurse who is interested in pursuing a career in teaching nursing, either as a faculty member in a school of nursing or in staff development positions. All coursework taken during the MNE program will apply to the PhD in nursing degree.

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PhD IN GERONTOLOGICAL NURSING

As part of the mission to grow the population of PhD prepared gerontological nursing faculty, OHSU offers two distinct pathways to a doctoral degree, the traditional post-master’s pathway and a post-baccalaureate to PhD. The gerontological expertise of OHSU faculty makes it possible for strong specialty courses and mentorship for PhD students committed to improving care to older persons through advanced practice, education, and research.

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ADULT-GERONTOLOGY ACUTE CARE NURSE PRACTITIONER (AGACNP)

Acuity in hospitals has been rising rapidly due to the declining average length of stay and to new technology that allows rapid assessment, treatment, and discharge. The skills gained from the AGACNP program will allow graduates to provide a spectrum of care ranging from disease prevention to acute and critical care management. This includes: stabilizing critically ill patients, preventing complications, restoring maximum health, providing palliation, and end-of-life care.

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UNDERGRADUATE GERONTOLOGY HONORS OPTION

The Gerontological Nursing Honors Program (GNHP) is designed for outstanding undergraduate nursing students to receive focused education, mentorship, and credits related to working with older adults. This unique honors program helps undergraduate students to better understand the needs of the aging population and prepares students for taking the next step in their education with an in-depth focus in gerontological nursing. GNHP students graduate with gerontology honors recognition on their transcripts and are recognized as honors graduates at commencement.

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