As America ages, the diverse needs of over 52 million older adults grows. Nurses will play a crucial role in ensuring that America’s health care system can respond to their unique healthcare needs. It is critical to increase the number of expert geriatric nurses in faculty positions.
This increase will:
- Provide geriatric education to nurses
- Advance research in gerontological nursing to improve the health and health care of older adults
- Role model enthusiasm for geriatric nursing practice in order to attract students into the field
According to a report published by the Oregon Center for Nursing, "Characteristics of the Nursing Workforce in Oregon - 2016", there were 3,489 advanced practice nurses practicing in Oregon. While most of these clinicians work with an adult population, a small percentage have specialized training in the care of older adults. Furthermore, only 3.4% of Oregon R.N.'s identify geriatrics as their main focus. Yet the majority of nurses, nurse practitioners and clinical nurse specialists encounter older adults across most care settings and specialties.
Oregon, like most states, lacks geriatric-prepared nurses and other health professionals. A national report stated that “the nation is not prepared to meet the social and health care needs of this population.” The report, from The Institute of Medicine (IOM), was titled "Retooling for an Aging America: Building the health care workforce (2008)". The IOM called for “fundamental reform” in the educational preparation and training of all health care professionals:
- to ensure the geriatric competence of the general workforce and
- to increase the recruitment and retention of geriatric specialists.
You can help the Hartford Center at OHSU address the serious shortage of nursing leaders in geriatric education, research and healthcare by giving to the Hartford Center.
We invite you to support the Hartford Center of Gerontological Excellence at OHSU.
You may visit the OHSU Foundation site to make a gift online.
You may also contact Jon Mohr, Associate Director of Development. He will work closely and confidentially with you and your financial advisors to ensure that your gift achieves your individual goals and expresses your personal vision.
We are grateful to those who have supported the Hartford Center and thank you for your continued support!
John A. Hartford Foundation - 30 years of grant making
Two reports about the John A. Hartford Foundation (JAHF) provide an overview their accomplishments in the field of geriatrics over the last 30 years.
One was published in Health Affairs. Stephen Isaacs, Paul S. Jellinek and Terry Fulmer authored "The JAHF and the Growth of Geriatrics." It is a synopsis of an evaluation commissioned by the JAHF in 2017.
Isaacs/Jellinek, a division of Health Policy Associates prepared the full report, "Assessment of the Accomplishments and Impact of the John A. Hartford Foundation's Grantmaking in Aging and Health: 1983 - 2015"
They got us thinking about what the JAHF has meant to our Hartford Center. We also thought about differences we have made, and continue to make, with the generous support of our School of Nursing and the OHSU Foundation. (Our JAHF funding ended in 2016.)
Through 2015, the nine geriatric nursing centers were awarded 280 prestigious pre- and post-doctoral fellowships. Our OHSU Hartford Center received 25 of those. Twenty were pre-docs and 5 were post-docs. Of the 14 pre-doctoral graduates, 12 are currently on the faculties of nursing schools, including several here.
For more on the JAHF's impact on geriatric nursing, please see page 22 of the final report.
"…[their] interlocking strategies created a cadre of geriatric nursing scholars and educators, fostered strong and enduring geriatric nursing institutions and programs, and embedded geriatrics content in nursing education and credentialing."
Our Hartford Center also advanced opportunities for geriatric training and scholarship. These opportunities included:
- PMCO-Advanced Practice Gerontological Nursing program for post-masters nurses
- Several programs including a summer "Faculty Scholars" program for undergraduate (UG) faculty
- ACES (Advancing Care Excellence for Seniors) training
- A two-day FLAG (Facilitated Learning through Advanced Geriatrics) workshop
- An undergraduate Gerontological Nursing Honors Program that graduated 37 students. These nurses will all bring to their practice gerontological expertise that goes beyond our baccalaureate curriculum. They live in all regions of our State and two honors graduates are currently on OHSU SON faculty.
We are grateful for the OHSU Foundation's continued support of our research mission through the endowed Hartford Award for Research and Practice (HARP).