America is aging as the population of older adults increases. The shortage of geriatric mental health specialists means that most geriatric mental healthcare will be provided by physicians who do not have specialty training in geriatrics. The Institute of Medicine Report of 2012 highlighted the urgent need for development of national competencies and curricula in geriatric mental health for all clinicians. Virtually all physicians can expect to treat older patients with mental health symptoms, yet currently there are no widely accepted learning objectives in geriatric mental health specific for medical students. The authors describe the development of a set of such learning objectives that all medical students should achieve by graduation. The iterative process included initial drafting by content experts from five medical schools with input and feedback from a wider group of geriatric psychiatrists, geriatricians, internists, and medical educators. The final document builds upon previously published work and includes specific knowledge, attitudes and skills in six key domains: Normal Aging, Mental Health Assessment of the Geriatric Patient, Psychopharmacology, Delirium, Depression, and Dementia. These objectives address a pressing need, providing a framework for national standards and curriculum development.
- Medical student
- geriatric mental health curriculum
- geriatric psychiatry curriculum
- undergraduate medical education
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geriatrics and Gerontology
- Psychiatry and Mental health