Research Presented at #AGS23 Focuses on Electronic Medical Records, Geriatric Emergency Departments, and Life Expectancy Predictions

  • At #AGS23, @AmerGeriatrics and #geriatrics experts cast a wide net for social & scientific innovations shaping better care for us all as we age.

New York (March 27, 2023) – Researchers presenting at this year’s American Geriatrics Society (AGS) Annual Scientific Meeting (#AGS23) to be held May 4-6, 2023 in Long Beach, California, represent the best and brightest in geriatrics scholarship, with this year’s selection drawn from a pool of more than 1071 submissions. Highlights from this year’s prestigious AGS23 Plenary Paper Session (Thurs., May 4 9:30-10:15am) include:

When Should Electronic Medical Records Stop Reminders for Cancer Screening in Older Adults? – A National Physician Survey (presented by Nancy L. Schoenborn, MD, MHS)
Many older adults are screened for breast and colorectal cancers beyond guideline recommended age or life expectancy thresholds, and electronic medical record (EMR) reminders are commonly used to prompt cancer screening. Dr. Schoenborn and researchers at Johns Hopkins University aimed to examine physician perspectives about thresholds for stopping cancer screening EMR reminders by surveying 1200 primary care physicians (PCP) and 600 gynecologists randomly selected from the AMA Masterfile. Respondents were asked to choose whether EMR reminders for cancer screening should stop based on a list of criteria that included age, life expectancy, specific serious illnesses, and functional limitations, and multiple responses were considered. 

Of the 592 eligible responses, 52.4% endorsed age 75 for stopping EMR reminders, 42.0% chose a threshold between 75-85, and 5.6% would not stop reminders even at age 85. For life expectancy thresholds, only 32.0% endorsed stopping EMR reminders when life expectancy is <10 years, 53.1% chose a threshold between 5-9 years, and 14.9% would not stop reminders even when life expectancy is <5 years. The authors surmised that the results may reflect reluctance to stop cancer screening or EMR reminders to enable physicians to maintain more control over decisions and they may be unlikely to support interventions that reduce over-screening by suppressing EMR cancer screening reminders.

An Outcome Comparison Between Geriatric and Non-geriatric Emergency Departments (presented by Cameron Gettel, MD, MHS)
Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation (GEDA) Program certification is a way for emergency departments (EDs) to be recognized for their commitment to delivering emergency care to older adults, yet little is known about whether these EDs differ in characteristics or common emergency care metrics. Dr. Gettel and colleagues at Yale University School of Medicine conducted an observational study of 6,444,110 ED visits from 2021 included in the Clinical Emergency Data Registry (CEDR), a national emergency medicine registry. After linking to the GEDA Program’s list, 38 ED sites were identified as accredited geriatric EDs (GEDs) where they compared GEDs to non-GEDs across age categories for four geriatric syndrome conditions.

Across 190 EDs included in the study, older adults across all age categories at GEDs had higher diagnosis rates for three of the four geriatric syndrome conditions of interest compared to older adults visiting non-GEDs. The study’s authors also found that ED length of stay was lower in GEDs, and 72-hour revisit rates were similar between groups across all age categories. Discharge rates were largely similar between GEDs and non-GEDs, aside from the oldest population.

Personalized Life Expectancy Years Spent in Dementia Progression Stages vs Normal Cognition (presented by Lillian Min, MD, MSHS)
Life expectancy predictions are an important tool for older adults and their caregivers in decision-making and future-planning, especially when older adults have dementia. These predictions often inform decisions on the adequacy, frequency, and affordability of both formal and informal care. However, there exists a significant blind spot in the current state of life expectancy predictions: cognitive status, function, and mobility are not considered. 

To address this gap, Drs. Min, Kang, and Cigolle analyzed data from the Health and Retirement Study (a nationally representative longitudinal health survey) to compare age, self-reported function and mobility, cognitive status, and mortality between normal and dementia subgroups. They calculated adults’ probabilities of transition between four states: independent, mobility impaired only, ADL (Activity of Daily Living) impaired, and death. Their findings indicate a substantial imbalance when comparing dementia versus normal cognition; e.g., a cognitively normal 70-year-old who is currently independent is expected 14.7 years of continued independence versus just 5.2 years of expected independence in an adult with dementia. The authors concluded that the inclusion of cognitive status, function, and mobility in life-expectancy predictions will enhance more precise estimates in older adults with dementia to improve treatment plans and the quality of care they receive.


About the American Geriatrics Society 
Founded in 1942, the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) is a nationwide, not-for-profit society of geriatrics healthcare professionals dedicated to improving the health, independence, and quality of life of older people. Our 6,000+ members include geriatricians, geriatrics nurse practitioners, social workers, family practitioners, physician assistants, pharmacists, and internists who are pioneers in advanced illness care for older individuals, with a focus on championing interprofessional teams, eliciting personal care goals, and treating older people as whole persons. AGS believes in a just society, one where we all are supported by and able to contribute to communities where ageism, ableism, classism, homophobia, racism, sexism, xenophobia, and other forms of bias and discrimination no longer impact healthcare access, quality, and outcomes for older adults and their caregivers. AGS advocates for policies and programs that support the health, independence, and quality of life of all of us as we age. AGS works across patient careresearchprofessional and public education, and public policy to improve the health, independence, and quality of life of all older people. For more information, visit

About the AGS Annual Scientific Meeting 
The AGS Annual Scientific Meeting is the premier educational event in geriatrics, providing the latest information on clinical care, research on aging, and innovative models of care delivery. More than 2,000 nurses, pharmacists, physicians, physician assistants, social workers, long-term care and managed care providers, healthcare administrators, and others will convene in Long Beach, California May 4-6, 2023 (pre-conference program on May 3) to advance geriatrics knowledge and skills through state-of-the-art educational sessions and research presentations. For more information, visit

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