Morristown, NJ – Atlantic Health System’s Morristown Medical Center today announced it has earned Level 2 (silver) Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation (GEDA) from The American College of Emergency Physicians, with support from The Gary and Mary West Health Institute and John A. Hartford Foundation.
The award recognizes emergency departments that provide excellent care for older adults. The Sameth Emergency Department at Morristown Medical Center is the second hospital in the state to earn this prestigious accreditation.
“The over-65 generation is the nation’s fastest-growing age group, and Morristown Medical Center is committed to ensuring our aging patients, families and caregivers have access to high-quality medical care that ensures they are safe and well-cared for—inside and outside the walls of our hospital,” said Trish O’Keefe, PhD, RN, President, Morristown Medical Center. “Morristown Medical Center is nationally recognized for its care of older adults, and we are pleased to have been recognized by The American College of Emergency Physicians for our dedication to this patient population.”
Morristown Medical Center is home to The Medicines Company Geriatric Emergency Department, which has senior-friendly features including:
- Volunteers who assist older patients in the ED
- Initiatives to ensure accurate medication reconciliation by an emergency department pharmacist
- New programs to reduce patient delirium while in the emergency department
- Non-skid flooring, adjustable lighting and grab bars
- Access to canes and walkers
- Hearing amplifiers for those who forget their hearing aids, reading glasses, and additional seating for visitors
- Reducing the use of urinary catheters
- Access to transportation services
- Earlier referral to palliative care when appropriate
- Physician and nurse training in caring for the geriatric population
A multi-specialist team including a board-certified geriatric nurse practitioner, geriatric social worker, dedicated emergency department pharmacists with geriatric-specific training, transitional care nurse and several care managers are focused on improving the care for the older population and adopt evidence-based practices for optimal care.
In addition, Morristown Medical Center’s Geriatric Assessment Center, part of the David and Joan Powell Center for Healthy Aging, provides consultative assessments for older patients with multiple medical and memory problems, primary care for those in poor health and at high risk for hospitalization, caregiver guidance, social work consultation and more.
Atlantic Health System’s Healthy Aging Program helps older people and their caregivers find the health care services and community resources that they need to live longer, healthier and more active lives. The program helps our community obtain information regarding private home care and visiting nurse services, rehabilitation facilities, housing organizations, adult day care centers and hospice care providers.
“Morristown Medical Center’s Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation shows our community that we have the medical team, facilities, and protocols in place to keep our seniors safe and gives peace of mind to caregivers and families,” said Dr. Michael Silverman, Vice Chairman and Director of Operations, Emergency Medicine, Morristown Medical Center.
About the Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation Program
The GEDA program is the culmination of years of progress in emergency care of older adults. In 2014, ACEP along with Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, Emergency Nurses Association, and American Geriatrics Society, developed and released geriatric ED guidelines, recommending measures ranging from adding geriatric-friendly equipment to specialized staff to more routine screening for delirium, dementia, and fall risk, among other vulnerabilities.
The voluntary GEDA program, which includes three levels similar to trauma center designations, provides specific criteria and goals for emergency clinicians and administrators to target. The accreditation process provides more than two dozen best practices for geriatric care and the level of GEDA accreditation achieved depends upon how many of these best practices an emergency department is able to meet. A Level 2 emergency department must incorporate many of these best practices, along with providing inter-disciplinary geriatric education, and having geriatric appropriate equipment and supplies available.
About Atlantic Health System
Atlantic Health System, headquartered in Morristown, N.J., is an integrated health care delivery system powered by a workforce of more than 16,500 team members and 4,800 affiliated physicians dedicated to building healthier communities. The system serves a population of five million, with over 400 sites of care, including six hospitals: Morristown Medical Center, Overlook Medical Center, Newton Medical Center, Chilton Medical Center, Hackettstown Medical Center and Goryeb Children’s Hospital.
Atlantic Health System provides care for the full continuum of health care needs including 11 urgent care centers, Atlantic Rehabilitation and Atlantic Home Care and Hospice. Facilitating the connection between these services on both land and air is the transportation fleet of Atlantic Mobile Health.
In addition to the employed workforce, Atlantic Alliance, a Clinically Integrated Network, represents more than 2,500 health care providers throughout northern and central NJ. Atlantic Health System leads the Healthcare Transformation Consortium, a partnership of six regional hospitals and health systems dedicated to improving access and affordability, and is a founding member of both the PIER Consortium – Partners in Innovation, Education, and Research – a streamlined clinical trial system that will expand access to groundbreaking research across six health systems in New Jersey and Pennsylvania and AllSpire Health Partners, a consortium of five leading health care organizations dedicated to serving patients, families and communities in New Jersey, New York, Maryland and Pennsylvania.