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Catholic University of America grant to provide courses geared toward gerontology


The Catholic University of America School of Nursing in Washington, D.C., recently was awarded a three-year grant for about $716,000 from the Health Resources and Services Administration, an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, to focus on the urgent healthcare needs of the growing elderly population.

According to a news release, the project seeks to improve health in the underserved geriatric population by offering a technology-enhanced interprofessional curriculum for advanced-practice nurses and graduate students in other health occupations by utilizing distance education strategies. The project director is Janet Selway, RN, CRNP, DNSc, director of the adult-gerontology nurse practitioner program at the school of nursing.

“Today, the movement toward interdisciplinary collaboration is expanding not only in academia but in the larger community, where healthcare is embracing the medical home-care model,” Patricia McMullen, RN, CRNP, PhD, JD, FAANP, dean of the school of nursing, said in the release. “Commencing interprofessional teamwork throughout students’ early course work will foster work among the healthcare disciplines both in academic and healthcare settings,”

The mismatch between the healthcare needs of the growing elderly population and the shortage of primary healthcare providers with geriatric expertise is both a local and national concern, according to the release. This grant will allow the school of nursing to assist new and current adult and family nurse practitioners to become eligible for a new certification as adult-gerontology nurse practitioners. The first course will be offered in January 2013. “Interprofessional Approaches to Geriatric Care” is open to graduate students from multiple disciplines, such as nursing, social work and clinical psychology. The course will be offered through the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area and will focus on providing collaborative patient-centered care and coordinated health management for geriatric patients across disciplines.


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