Teaching


Central Geriatrics Sessions

In January of 2008, the first of four groups of the second year Harvard Medical School class came to Hebrew Rehabilitation Center to learn physical diagnosis as part of the new Harvard Medical School Central Geriatric Sessions.

This program represents an historic milestone in the history of HMS, because for the first time all students were required to learn to examine older patients at a long-term care facility. This development is the first realization of a 25-year vision spear-headed by Harvard Medical School Professor Lewis Lipsitz, M.D., who is also vice president for Academic Medicine and co-director of the Institute for Aging Research at Hebrew SeniorLife and chief of gerontology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). Dr. Lipsitz's goal was to ensure that all HMS students gain exposure to geriatric medicine as part of their instruction.

"Given the fact that almost every practicing physician providing care for adults will soon have a practice filled with elderly patients, it is essential that every medical student become skilled in the examination and treatment of older people," says Dr. Lipsitz. "Long-term care facilities are excellent places to achieve this goal, since residents living there have a multitude of symptoms and physical findings that can be studied with the luxury of time, unimpeded by the exigencies of acute illness and diagnostic tests in the traditional acute hospital setting. I have always dreamed that some day there would be academic nursing homes analogous to academic medical centers that would serve as exemplary research and training sites in geriatric medicine to prepare new generations of physicians skilled in the principles and practice of geriatric medicine."

 

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