, MA — The VA Boston Healthcare System received Level Three Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation, or GEDA, from the American College of Emergency Physicians Wednesday, Feb. 16.
The accreditation program was developed to ensure geriatric patients receive well-coordinated, quality care at the appropriate level during every ED encounter. Level three emergency departments have demonstrated one or more specific initiatives to elevate the level of care for seniors, and trained staff to implement these efforts.
“The Veteran population is aging, so it’s important we provide the exceptional care seniors need,” said Vincent Ng, director of the VA Boston Healthcare System. “We’re grateful for this recognition, which shows our commitment to continue providing the highest standards of care for our Veterans.”
The concept of a geriatric emergency department has been developed over the past decade, as hospitals nationwide have recognized that one size of emergency care does not fit all; older patients can have specific presentations, needs, dispositions and outcomes. While a geriatric ED may be a separate space designated for older adults, more often it represents the integration of best practices for older adults into an existing emergency department, as is the case at VA Boston.
Best practices for geriatric EDs include:
- Ensuring geriatric-focused education and interdisciplinary staffing
- Providing standardized approaches to care that address common geriatric issues
- Ensuring optimal transitions of care from the ED to other settings, such as inpatient, home, community-based care, rehabilitation or long-term care
- Promoting geriatric-focused quality improvement, and enhancements to the physical environment, equipment and supplies
More information on the GEDA program is available at https://www.acep.org/geda/.