The University of California (UC) San Diego has received $11.8 million in grant funding to build the city’s first geriatric emergency care unit. The unit, to be located within UC San Diego Health in La Jolla, will combine urgent care, case management, acute care screening and social and psychiatric care. The project is one of the first in the country to offer a range of geriatric-specific behavioral programs and services as well as urgent medical care.
An additional 8,500 sq. ft. space will be added in 2018 as a dedicated training and research center for geriatric medicine, part of a research partnership with the West Health Institute.
“We’re excited to collaborate with [philanthropists] Gary and Mary West and the West Health Institute to engage in specialized and coordinated clinical care research, as well as provide a whole host of behavioral, urgent care and other vital programs for seniors,” said Ted Chan, MD, chair of emergency medicine at UC San Diego Medical School, in an announcement about the grants.
In 2015, seniors accounted for nearly a quarter of all emergency department visits at UC San Diego Health. In San Diego County, the number of residents aged 65 and older is expected to double in the next 14 years.