What is geriatric assessment?
A comprehensive evaluation designed to optimize an older person's ability to enjoy good health, improve their overall quality of life, reduce the need for hospitalization and/or institutionalization, and enable them to live independently for as long as possible.
An assessment consists of:
Examination of the older person's status in terms of:
Physical, mental, and psycho-social health.
Ability to function well and to independently perform basic activities of daily living such as dressing, bathing, meal preparation, medication management, etc.
Living arrangements, social network, and access to support services.
Identification of current problems or anticipated problems in any of these areas.
Comprehensive Care Plan which addresses all problems, suggests actions required, and makes recommendations for support services.
Link between support services, the person, and his family to assure provision of necessary services.
Monitoring of the extent to which support services have addressed the problems identified and modification of the Care Plan as needed.
How do you know when a geriatric assessment is needed?
Geriatric assessment would be appropriate when there is a dramatic change in a person’s level of functioning or when there are persistent or intermittent symptoms such as memory loss, confusion, or other signs of possible dementia. Sometimes what looks like Alzheimer's or dementia can be the result of medication interactions or other medical or psychiatric problems. Because of the thoroughness of the geriatric assessment, it is one of the best ways to determine what the actual problem is.
Who performs a geriatric assessment?
A geriatric assessment can be done in many different settings such as: a hospital, nursing home, outpatient clinic, physician's office, or the patient's home. The assessment is comprehensive in scope, and thus, can only be successfully conducted by a multi-disciplinary team of experts. This team may include physicians, social workers, physical and/or occupational therapists, dieticians, psychologists, pharmacists, and geriatric nurse practitioners.
You can request a referral for a geriatric assessment from a primary care physician or contact a Geriatric Assessment Center.
Geriatric Assessment Centers
You must call to make an appointment with any of these facilities.
300 Second Ave, Long Branch NJ 07740
Center for Geriatric Health Care
201 Lyons Ave, Newark NJ 07112
Rutgers University Behavioral Health Care
121 Route 31, Suite 1000, Flemington NJ 08822
435 South St, Morristown NJ 07960
42 East Laurel Rd, Stratford NJ 08084
Division of Geriatrics-GEMS
254 Easton Ave, New Brunswick NJ 08901