Strong and Highland Hospitals Earn Highest Level of Age Friendly Health System Certification


The University of Rochester’s Institute of Aging announced that Strong Memorial and Highland Hospitals have been certified as participants in the Aged Friendly Health System (AFHS), part of a nationwide movement to improve care health for the elderly.

The “Level 2: Committed to Excellence in Care” designation required both hospitals to provide three months of verified data to demonstrate impact in four priority areas (the “4Ms”):

  1. What matters – Know and align care with each older person’s specific health goals and care preferences, including but not limited to end-of-life care and across care settings.
  2. Medication – If medication is needed, use elder-friendly medication that does not interfere with what matters to the older person, their mobility or mentation in any care setting.
  3. Mention – Prevent, identify, treat and manage dementia, depression and delirium in all healthcare settings.
  4. Mobility – Ensure seniors move safely every day to maintain function and do what matters.

“Our data confirms the value of creating a framework to improve care for the elderly, and that it can be effective even in the midst of a global pandemic,” said Annette Medina-Walpole, MD, professor of medicine. Paul H. Fine, Division Chief. of Geriatrics and Aging, and Director of the Institute of Aging at the University of Rochester. “This is one of the first steps in our transformation journey to ensure age-friendly care for seniors across all UR Medicine care facilities.”

the Health system adapted to seniors is an initiative of the John A. Hartford Foundation and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement in partnership with the American Hospital Association (AHA) and the Catholic Health Association of the United States.

As one of the largest health systems in Upstate New York, URMC will play a key role in advancing the AFHS initiative and serve as a model for health systems across the country. national scale.

“This recognition represents hundreds of hours of hard work by our team members who have made Strong Memorial and Highland Hospital premier destinations for senior care in upstate New York. said Jennifer Muniak, MD, assistant professor of medicine in the Division of Geriatrics and Aging. at the University of Rochester and geriatrician at Highland Hospital. “We look forward to continuing to grow our program so that generations of patients can benefit from the compassionate and excellent care that our hospitals have always been known for.”

URMC is taking a multi-pronged approach to its AFHS transformation, Medina-Walpole said, convening an expert team of interdisciplinary healthcare professionals in hospitals and care settings to put the 4Ms into practice by developing pathways of care and by monitoring the elderly who receive 4M care. . Current sites include Strong and Highland, the Eastman Institute for Oral Health, the Center for Perioperative Medicine at URMC, and the outpatient practice of the UR Geriatric Medicine Group.

“Creating an AFHS and integrating 4Ms throughout the patient experience decreases patient vulnerability, improves outcomes, and positively impacts patient satisfaction,” said Teresa Halbert, MS, RN, coordinator of the geriatric program of the URMC. “We all have older people in our lives that we care about deeply, so it only makes sense that we establish safeguards to protect them.”

Strong Memorial and Highland Geriatric Fracture Centers are examples of senior-friendly places in our healthcare system. “Sharing best practices between our own providers and other AFHS institutions will result in the best and most consistent care possible,” said Jenny Shen, MD, assistant professor of medicine, who leads the AFHS initiative for the Strong’s Geriatric Fracture Center.

“By collecting data and defining for our healthcare system the best ways to deliver care to the elderly population, we can champion the 4Ms as a whole that will create consistency across all clinical sites,” said Robert J Panzer, MD, URMC Chief Quality Officer. “It’s a great opportunity to improve on what’s already been done on our journey to high reliability.”

For this work, the University of Rochester received funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration through the Geriatric Workforce Improvement Program – a $3.75 award million over five years and the Geriatrics Academic Career Award to provide support for the spread of the health system’s Age-Friendly Initiative through interprofessional education.

Jennifer Muniak, MD, Division of Geriatrics and Aging, is currently the AFHS Champion in her subspecialties and clinical practice sites. Ian Deutchki, MD, Division of Geriatrics and Aging; and geriatrics scholars, Szilvia Arany, DMD, Ph.D., Department of Dentistry; Ciandra D’souza, MD, MPH, Division of Geriatrics and Aging; Heather Lander, MD, Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine; and Jenny Shen, MD, Division of Hospital Medicine.


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