Northwell Health has announced two major milestones around geriatric care —being recognized as an “age-friendly” health system by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and The John A. Hartford Foundation, and that Glen Cove Hospital has become Northwell’s first Geriatric Center of Excellence.
“Caring for our older adults is a big responsibility, one that we take great pride in,” said Michael Dowling, president and CEO of Northwell Health. “Our aging population will face health issues that require the right care at the right time which is why we have increased our services including at Glen Cove Hospital. This recognition is humbling and a true testament to the exceptional care we are providing our elders.”
Bestowed by the IHI and Hartford Foundation in partnership with the American Hospital Association and the Catholic Health Association of the United States, the “age-friendly” recognition helps hospitals and other care settings implement evidence-based interventions specifically designed to improve care for older adults. Age-Friendly Health Systems address four essential elements of care for older patients: what matters most, medication, mentation and mobility. Northwell’s facilities being recognized are:
- Glen Cove Hospital
- Glen Cove Family Medicine Group
- Mather Hospital
- Phelps Hospital
- Long Island Jewish Forest Hills and
- Northwell Health Physician Partners Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine at New Hyde Park.
Among some of the steps that Northwell has taken to earn this recognition is having all its emergency departments achieve geriatric emergency department accreditation through the American College of Emergency Physicians, providing falls prevention education and bringing together multi-disciplinary co-management teams to provide the best management of people hip fractures.
In addition, Northwell has developed a dementia memory care program through the University of California, Los Angeles that incorporates neurologists and psychologists and aims to help families understand the stages of this disease and how to manage their loved one’s mood.
Northwell Health and Zucker School of Medicine have expanded its specialized fellowship training opportunities in geriatrics and palliative medicine in order to further educate the next generation of physicians.
“Northwell Health has been steadily and thoughtfully adding services and protocols over the last several years to provide expert and improved care for older adults,” said Dr. Maria Torroella Carney, Northwell’s chief of geriatrics and palliative medicine. “We aim to promote longevity, safety, and independence for a person as they face a challenging aspect of life and as needs evolve across a lifespan. I am proud of Northwell for all of its effort to provide the best care possible for this population.”
Central to Northwell’s initiatives to care for older adults is Glen Cove Hospital, which is now the health system’s first Geriatric Center of Excellence. To achieve this, the hospital hired a director of geriatric hospital medicine and is training its staff on best practices for this population.
“I first spoke with Dr. Carney almost five years ago about creating the Geriatric Center of Excellence at Glen Cove Hospital, said U.S. Congressman Tom Suozzi (D-3rd district). “I want to thank Michael Dowling and the entire Northwell team for making it a reality. Glen Cove is the perfect spot for this world-class center of excellence.”
Glen Cove Hospital is in the process of building a caregiver center with the help of $400,000 from the Glen Cove Hospital advisory council-run annual appeal. Huntington Hospital is also working on creating a caregiving center; the hospital received a naming gift from the Reichert Family Foundation. These follow Northwell caregiver centers already established at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco and Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead. These centers connect loved ones to resources and support to help them best care for their family member.
“At Glen Cove Hospital, we have developed improvements in care for our older adults starting from the moment they enter our hospital and we are building vital connections to the community to provide a continuum of care post-discharge,” said Kerri Scanlon, RN, Glen Cove Hospital’s executive director. “Our revolutionary Parkinson’s rehabilitation disease program is another facet that helps people grow older with dignity and a focus on preserving their independence and quality of life.”
For more information about Northwell’s services for older adults, go to https://www.northwell.edu/geriatrics-pallative-care. To learn more about Glen Cove Hospital’s Geriatric Center of Excellence, call Susan Kwiatek, NP, vice president of aging and supportive care at 516-674-7408.