Caregivers in Health Reform

FriendsAs part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148), that President Barack Obama signed into law on March 23, 2010, the following provisions were included.

1. Expands Eligibility for Geriatric Academic Career Awards to a variety of new disciplines, including faculty in psychology.

2. Authorizes a new Geriatric Career Incentive Awards Program to provide financial support to foster greater interest among a variety of health professionals in entering the field of geriatrics, including students of psychology.

3. Expands Authority for Geriatric Education Centers to offer short-term intensive courses (a “fellowship”) in geriatrics for faculty members in medical schools and other health professions schools with programs in psychology or other health disciplines.  The fellowship may be offered at graduate programs in psychology.  Geriatric Education Centers receiving these grants are required to develop and offer training courses to family caregivers and direct care providers at no charge or minimal cost or incorporate mental health and dementia “best practices” training into their courses.

More information is available through the US Department of Health and Human Services guide to Comprehensive Geriatric Education Programs.