2020 Press Releases

UPDATE: Journal of the American Geriatrics Society Highlights "ABCDs" of COVID-19 for Older Adults, Long-Term Care

UPDATE (April 3, 2020): The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society published the following update to the original special article highlighted below.

New York (March 27, 2020)—The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (JAGS) this week rushed to publication a special article describing critical points for combatting the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic for older adults and those in long-term care.

The article offers a summary of current information and evidence, noting the imperative for understanding and acting upon the “ABCDs” of the COVID-19 crisis:

UPDATE: COVID-19 Stimulus Signed into Law, Bringing Momentum for Economy & Important Bright Spot for Geriatrics

New York (March 27, 2020)—The American Geriatrics Society (AGS) today commended Congress and President Trump for supporting critical efforts to expand geriatrics expertise through the more than $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package (S. 3548). 

“Doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physician assistants, social workers, and all our geriatrics experts are vital—not just to the U.S. economy but also to our health, safety, and independence, which make our economy what it is,” noted AGS CEO Nancy E. Lundebjerg, MPA. “As we continue to review the stimulus in detail, we applaud Senators Bob Casey and Susan Collins, as well as Representatives Michael Burgess and Jan Schakowsky, who were instrumental in helping prioritize long-term solutions serving older adults in this rapid response to COVID-19.”

The proposals included in the COVID-19 package incorporate language from the earlier proposed Title VII Health Care Workforce Reauthorization Act of 2019 (S. 2997) in the Senate and Educating Medical Professionals and Optimizing Workforce Efficiency and Readiness (EMPOWER) for Health Act of 2019 (H.R. 2781) in the House. While AGS experts remain pleased to see the GWEPs and GACAs reauthorized, they did express concern that the final authorizing level of $40.7 million could compromise the future success of both programs. The AGS continues to advocate for increased funding totaling $51 million, which would do much to close the current geographic and demographic gaps in geriatrics workforce training.

AGS Applauds Important Action This Week on Geriatrics Priorities, Including Older Americans Act Becoming Law

New York (March 26, 2020)—Representing more than 6,000 healthcare professionals dedicated to improving the health, independence, and quality of life of older adults, the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) commended congressional leaders and the Trump Administration for signing the Older Americans Act (OAA) Reauthorization Act of 2020 (H.R. 4334) into law.

This key legislation, which will power important social and protective services for older Americans through 2024, adds to critical and much-needed momentum for geriatrics this week in light of COVID-19, including support for workforce training programs in the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package slated for a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Originally passed in 1965 and last reauthorized in 2016, the Older Americans Act has been vital to health and well-being for older people. The Supporting Older Americans Act of 2020 will:

COVID-19 Stimulus Brings Momentum for Economy…and Important Bright Spot for Geriatrics Expertise

New York (March 26, 2020)—The American Geriatrics Society (AGS) today commended the U.S. Senate for supporting critical efforts to expand geriatrics expertise through the more than $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package (S. 3548), which now heads to the House of Representatives for a vote expected by Friday. With support from Senators Bob Casey (D-Pa.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), the Senate stimulus bill includes an earlier dedicated proposal championed by both lawmakers to reauthorize the Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP) and the Geriatrics Academic Career Awards (GACAs).

“Doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physician assistants, social workers, and all our geriatrics experts are vital—not just to the U.S. economy but also to our health, safety, and independence, which make our economy what it is,” noted AGS CEO Nancy E. Lundebjerg, MPA. “As we continue to review the stimulus proposal in detail, we applaud Senators Casey and Collins for helping prioritize long-term solutions in this rapid response to COVID-19.”

In COVID-19 Response to Congress & Administration, AGS Calls for Access to Medical Supplies, Telehealth, Among Other Issues

New York (March 24, 2020)—In letters sent yesterday to Congressional leaders, Vice President Pence, and White House Coronavirus Task Force Coordinator Deborah Birx, MD, experts at the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) reinforced the need for medical supplies, telehealth, expertise in older adult care, and a range of other priorities in response to COVID-19. As diverse as these important focal points are, they highlight a key theme that crosscuts the pandemic: Building momentum for older adult care builds momentum for us all.

On World Delirium Day, AGS Launches AGS CoCare: HELP™ to Turn Tide for Serious Condition Affecting Millions

  • On #WorldDeliriumDay, @AmerGeriatrics launches AGS CoCare: HELP™ to turn tide for serious condition affecting millions #delirium #geriatrics #aging #ThisIsGeriatrics http://ow.ly/8GwJ30qp4OW

New York (March 11, 2020)—With the launch of HELP.AGSCoCare.org, the online home for AGS CoCare: HELP™—a seminal program designed to prevent delirium, functional decline, falls, and other adverse outcomes among hospitalized older adults—the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) hopes this World Delirium Day will be one that turns the tide for this serious health condition affecting millions annually.

“Empowering health systems to recognize, manage, and prevent delirium is a hallmark of geriatrics,” notes Sharon K. Inouye, MD, MPH, who developed the original Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP), now known as AGS CoCare: HELP™. “With this critical expansion of a key program that made delirium prevention possible, we have bandwidth through the AGS to reach more health systems than ever before,” Dr. Inouye concluded.

AGS: Trump Administration's 2021 Budget "Deeply Troubling" for Older Americans

New York (Feb. 19, 2020)—Experts at the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) raised grave concerns with President Trump’s 2021 budget proposal, which remains “deeply troubling for older Americans, families, and health professionals.” In comments shared below, the AGS warned that the proposal would eliminate training programs, reduce funding for health research, and jeopardize coverage and services for older Americans if adopted as written.

“Even though this proposal is just a ‘wish list’ for now, it sends a troubling message,” said Nancy E. Lundebjerg, MPA, Chief Executive Officer of the AGS. “That’s why we’re urging everyone to let the White House and Congress know that cutting support for older adults now cuts care for us all as we age.”

In assessing the Trump Administration’s proposal, the AGS raised significant objection to changes that fail to reflect the needs of all Americans, particularly those who are most vulnerable.  Specifically, the proposal would: