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BUFFALO, NEW YORK—Erie County Medical Center (ECMC) Corporation today announced that it is part of a movement to improve health care for older adults, contributing to a goal of continuing to expand and grow Age-Friendly care.
Thomas J. Quatroche Jr., PhD, ECMC President and CEO, said, “ECMC was first recognized as an Institute for Healthcare Improvement Level 1 – Participant of the Age-Friendly Health Systems in January 2021 and now has achieved the even higher Level 2 recognition as an ‘Age-Friendly Health System – Committed to Care Excellence’ thanks to the work of our Geriatrics, Medicine D, and Palliative Care interdisciplinary team. These dedicated caregivers worked collaboratively to elevate the quality of care for our hospitalized older adults. We look forward to both sharing our best practices and learning what’s working for others around the country in providing age-friendly care. The Age-Friendly Health Systems initiative is an important part of our commitment to provide every older adult with the best care possible.”
To achieve Level 2 recognition, ECMC had to submit counts for the number of patients that received Age-Friendly care. From April to October 2022, approximately 425 patients had their 4Ms addressed during hospitalization. The interventions can be tested and adapted by participating in Age-Friendly Health Systems Action Communities. These collaborative initiatives bring together health care teams committed to sharing data and learning together. All teams strive toward reliably implementing age-friendly best practices across emergency departments, intensive care units, medical-surgical units, general wards, and primary and specialty care settings.
The Age-Friendly Health Systems initiative is based on a series of practices focused on addressing four essential elements (known as the 4Ms) of care for older patients:
Mind – To address inpatient delirium, ECMC created a CAM nursing assessment. Currently, 298 of 364 Med-Surg nurses have completed delirium education. This initiative is currently being expanded into the Emergency Department.
Mobility – ECMC’s rehab team has created a progressive mobility initiative. The team shares personalized goals with patients and the interdisciplinary team.
Medications – For the past three years, UBMD Pharmacy has been rounding with ECMC’s Medicine D caregivers. Together, UBMD and ECMC created a polypharmacy and deprescribing template completed on patients admitted to Medicine D.
Matters Most – The Palliative Care team interviewed 76 patients about What Matters most to them during their hospitalization. Common themes included: being with their family, being aware of discharge plans, independence, and mobility.
The Age-Friendly Health Systems initiative was launched in 2017 by The John A. Hartford Foundation and IHI, in partnership with the American Hospital Association and Catholic Health Association of the US. For more information, visit www.ihi.org/agefriendly.