American Geriatrics Society Annual Report

From the Desk of Nancy E. Lundebjerg, MPA, AGS CEO

Since 1942, the AGS has offered a professional home for the diverse health professionals who care for us all as we age. Our members represent a community of clinical experts, advocates, and researchers who live our mission of improving the health and quality of life of older people every day. That is inspiring. Whether it’s advocating for a better health system or developing cutting-edge models of care, we have a track record of working together to ensure our priorities are heard in clinics and communities across the country—and on Capitol Hill. We look forward to accomplishing even more as we work together for a future when every older adult receives high-quality, person-centered care.

Nancy E. Lundebjerg, MPA, AGS CEO


Our Mission:      
To improve the health, independence, and quality of life of all older people.

Our Vision:
We are all able to contribute to our communities and maintain our health, safety, and independence as we age; and older people have access to high-quality, person-centered care informed by geriatrics principles.

 

Who We Are

Founded in 1942, the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) is a nationwide, not-for-profit society of geriatrics healthcare professionals that has—for 75 years—worked to improve the health, independence, and quality of life of older people. Our nearly 6,000 members include geriatricians, geriatric nurses, social workers, family practitioners, physician assistants, pharmacists, internists, and a range of health professions trainees. We provide leadership to healthcare professionals, policymakers, and the public by implementing and advocating for programs in patient care, research, professional and public education, and public policy.

In 1999, the AGS established the Health in Aging Foundation to help translate the expertise of our members into practical, reliable health information for older adults and caregivers. Since then, the Foundation has provided tools and information to millions of older adults through our public education site, HealthinAging.org, and our public education initiatives. We also have supported educational opportunities for hundreds of emerging health professionals to expand the reach of quality geriatrics care.

The AGS leads and lends its voice to a diverse array of organizations championing workforce empowerment and the needs of older people—from the Geriatrics-for-Specialists Initiative and the Association of Directors of Geriatric Academic Programs (ADGAP) to the Eldercare Workforce Alliance—all working to improve access to geriatrics expertise for us all as we age.

Who We Are: AGS & Geriatrics by the Numbers in 2016

  • The AGS includes 5,000+ interprofessional members, including geriatricians, nurses, social workers, physician assistants, pharmacists, physical therapists, occupational therapists, health professions trainees, and many other stakeholders committed to older adult care.
  • 45,370+ publications and products accessed by 27,000+ subscribers to GeriatricsCareOnline.org, the online home for AGS resources and publications.
  • 863,000+ older adults and caregivers accessed resources and information from HealthinAging.org, the public education platform for the our Health in Aging Foundation.
  • 2,700+ professionals from 20+ countries attended the 2016 AGS Annual Scientific Meeting (#AGS16) in Long Beach, CA.
  • 600+ articles and editorials on the latest in geriatrics research and clinical care were published in the 2016 volume of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
  • 35+ letters to Congress or regulatory agencies were written by or in collaboration with the AGS to address the challenges and opportunities facing older adults and geriatrics healthcare professionals.
  • 2,200+ exchanges took place on MyAGSOnline, our exclusive digital forum for connecting AGS members.

What We Do: A Look Back at 2016

  • January 2016: @AmerGeriatrics followers on Twitter crest 9,800.
  • January 2016: The AGS and American College of Surgeons release new national perioperative guideline addressing the unique care needs of older adults facing surgery.
  • January 2016: With a $3 million grant from The John A. Hartford Foundation, the AGS launches the Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP) Coordinating Center, a strategic resource for 44 organizations working across the country to train the health professionals we all will need as we age.
  • January 2016: The AGS submits recommendations to the Senate Finance Committee on the “Bipartisan Chronic Care Working Group Policy Options Document” advocating for solutions supporting coordinated, person-centered care for Medicare beneficiaries with chronic diseases.
  • January 2016: Our iGeriatrics app undergoes an extensive update and redesign to include full content of the AGS Beers Criteria®, among other highlights.
  • February 2016: The AGS unveils a new position statement on high-quality multicultural care for older adults, outlining present health disparities and the importance of addressing culture and health literacy as part of geriatrics expertise.
  • February 2016: A newly updated guide from the AGS and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) translates research findings and public health initiatives into practical, person-centered advice for assessing and counseling older drivers.
  • February 2016: The AGS publishes our new Reference Guide to Ethics Domains Relevant to Palliative Care, a guide designed to assist clinicians in ethical decision-making during palliative care.
  • March 2016: The AGS celebrates advocacy leading to the long-overdue reauthorization of the Older Americans Act, key legislation delivering social and protective services to older Americans through 2018.
  • March 2016: The AGS submits comments to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding episode groups to be used in the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), a critical component of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA).
  • March 2016: For the third time running, the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) accredits the AGS with commendation. This distinction, the highest offered by ACCME, remains a testament to the high-quality content, courses, and materials developed by our members and experts.
  • March 2016: The AGS launches its newest special interest group (SIG) on Care for Homeless Older Adults, bringing the total number of AGS SIGs to 35.
  • March 2016: Members of the AGS Research Committee meet with senior staff from the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Research and Development (ORD) to learn about funding, research programs, training and career development activities, and potential areas of collaboration.
  • April 2016: Advancing its reach and impact, the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (JAGS) launches its own Twitter and Facebook presence for sharing geriatrics expertise.
  • April 2016: The AGS announces annual award recognition for more than 15 leading researchers, clinicians, educators, and emerging health professionals who made outstanding contributions to high-quality, person-centered care in 2015 and 2016.
  • April 2016: The AGS and the Health in Aging Foundation team up with Wiley & Sons to publish a new book in the For Dummies series on keeping physically fit, eating right, managing stress, and connecting with others to improve mental health.
  • May 2016: The AGS releases the 9th edition of the Geriatrics Review Syllabus, which now includes 66 chapters covering six broad areas of geriatric medicine.
  • May 2016: The AGS opens the 2016 Annual Scientific Meeting welcoming our second nurse president: Ellen Flaherty, PhD, APRN, AGSF. More than 2,700 clinicians, researchers, educators, trainees, and journalists join us in Long Beach, CA, for the field’s premier educational event.
  • May 2016: The AGS and its Health in Aging Foundation announce their newest honor recognizing excellence in geriatrics research: the Thomas and Catherine Yoshikawa Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement in Clinical Investigation.
  • May 2016: In a new article for Generations: Journal of the American Society on Aging, AGS CEO Nancy E. Lundebjerg and The John A. Hartford Foundation Program Director Rani E. Snyder, MPA, report on investments supporting the eldercare workforce.
  • June 2016: With support from the NIA, the AGS announces it will continue a series of prestigious scientific conferences on emerging issues in geriatrics as part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Research Conference Cooperative Agreement (or “U13”) Program.
  • July 2016: Following months of advocacy and policy analysis, the AGS commends CMS for continuing to support payment for services provided to Medicare beneficiaries with multiple chronic conditions as part of the 2017 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule.
  • August 2016: The AGS submits a comment letter to CMS on initial plans for implementing MACRA.
  • August 2016: A new editorial and corresponding virtual journal issue offer a look back at 20 of the most important studies impacting older adult care as published by the JAGS from 2000 to 2015.
  • August 2016: The AGS launches the #IAmGeriatrics product line anchored by a wordcloud of member reflections on passion for careers in geriatrics. Proceeds from the #IAmGeriatrics store benefit the AGS Health in Aging Foundation.
  • October 2016: AGS hosts “Urinary Incontinence in the Elderly,” the third in a series of U13 Bedside-to-Bench Conferences sponsored by the NIA to advance cutting-edge research.
  • November 2016: Experts at the AGS unveil new guidance on care and decision-making for a unique and growing group of older adults who lack the capacity to provide informed consent to medical treatment, and who face added challenges because they have no written outline of their care preferences and no identified “surrogate” to assist in medical decision-making when needed.
  • November 2016: The AGS welcomes 18 members as our newest AGS Fellows.
  • November 2016: To help physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, and registered nurse anesthetists navigate MACRA, the AGS launches an online toolkit including webinars, a summary of the Quality Payment Program, and various resources for better understanding changes in health policy.
  • November 2016: The AGS debuts the 5th edition of the Geriatrics Nursing Review Syllabus a concise and comprehensive text developed by the AGS for nursing professionals.
  • December 2016: To prepare healthcare professionals for changes in 2017, the AGS hosts a webinar to highlight significant coding and payment updates in geriatrics.
  • December 2016: HealthinAging.org receives its 863,000th visitor for the year, with the Foundation raising more than $150,000 to support older adults and caregivers as well as professional education for emerging geriatrics leaders.