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About Us For Patients and their Families Office of Geriatric Research Medical Education Newsletter

National Academy for Psychosocial Health on Aging (NAPHA)

The National Academy for Psychosocial Health on Aging (NAPHA) was created in 2009 by Weill Cornell Medical College's Division of Geriatrics and Gerontology. The Academy was developed in response to the need for an integrated approach in geriatric health care to psychosocial concerns of older adults.

NAPHA's Mission Statement for Psychosocial Health: The mission of the NAPHA is to promote and secure psychosocial health for all older adults and their caregivers through the integration of comprehensive programs in research, clinical care and teaching.

NAPHA's Vision Statement for Psychosocial Health: The vision of the NAPHA is to promote "the whole person" approach to geriatric health care. This is accomplished through the development of comprehensive and practical psychosocial programs, resources and curricula for physicians and other practitioners, caregivers and older adults around the world.

NAPHA's Values and Core Beliefs:

1) Emotional and social problems have a significant impact on the lives of older adults, often influencing the course of acute and chronic illnesses.

2) Caring about the whole person is essential to providing quality health care.

3) A premium must be placed not only on longevity but also quality-of-life.

4) Health care must be comprehensive, accessible and properly coordinated across disciplines and with community service providers.

5) Geriatric education and services should aim to incorporate evidence-based information and integrate new technologies to achieve optimal outcomes.

6) All older adults are entitled to the same standard of care that we want for our own loved ones and ourselves.

NAPHA's Target Populations: There are 3 populations that can benefit from advancing the Academy's psychosocial initiatives at a local, regional or national level: Professionals, Caregivers and Older Adults.

  1. Professionals: The NAPHA, working collaboratively with the Division's highly qualified faculty, currently delivers psychosocial education and practice tools to medical students, residents, fellows and practicing physicians. These educational activities are conducted at the local, national and international level, primarily in internal medicine, family medicine and psychiatry. In addition, the same faculty develops and conducts workshops and lectures on a broad range of psychosocial topics for hospital-based and community, nurses, social workers and social service providers in the elder service network. NAPHA also delivers psychosocial education nationally though the website, and via national forums and conferences.
  2. Caregivers: Caregivers of older people with chronic illness and impairments often experience a myriad of health, practical and emotional problems. These problems are associated with their caregiving responsibilities and often go unrecognized by health care providers. NAPHA strives to improve the health care system's responsiveness to caregivers through its innovative and compassionate educational and direct service programs, including
  3. Older Adults: The U.S. aging population is growing as the baby-boomers advance in years. Called the "aging tsunami", by 2010, the US population will have 39 million citizens aged 65 and over. By 2050, this number will explode to 86.7 million. The NAPHA strives to deliver to older adults evidence-based information, guidance and services directed towards psychosocial health to increase their ability to live engaged, productive and independent lifestyles.

NAPHA's Future Focus: NAPHA aims to further develop geriatric psychosocial course content, programs, and accessible, practical resources for far-reaching dissemination to medical students, practitioners, caregivers and older adults throughout the United States and internationally. This expansion will result in better care for older adults and improve the quality of life of our older population for generations to come.

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