Journal Article The Urgency of Preparing Primary Care Physicians to Care for Older People with Chronic Illnesses
Chad Boult, Steven R. Counsell, Rosanne M. Leipzig, Robert A. Berenson
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Population trends are driving an undeniable imperative: The United States must begin training its primary care physicians to provide higher-quality, more cost-effective care to older people with chronic conditions. Doing so will require aggressive initiatives to educate primary care physicians to apply principles of geriatricsfor example, optimizing functional autonomy and quality of lifewithin emerging models of chronic care. Policy options to drive such reforms include the following: providing financial support for medical schools and residency programs that adopt appropriate educational innovations; tailoring Medicare's educational subsidy to reform graduate medical education; and invoking state requirements that physicians obtain geriatric continuing education credits to maintain their licensure or to practice as Medicaid providers or medical directors of nursing homes. This paper also argues that the expertise of geriatricians could be broadened to include educational and leadership skills. These geriatrician-leaders could then become teachers in the educational programs of many disciplines. This would require changes inside and outside academic medicine.
Research Areas Health and health care
Tags Federal health care reform Health care delivery and payment Health equity Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program  State health care reform Hospitals and physicians Medicare
Policy Centers Health Policy Center