All teaching sites for the geriatrics fellowship are conveniently located within 1/2 mile of each other.
The Monk Geriatric Center operated by the Department of Family Medicine is the primary training site for the fellowship. This ambulatory setting provides the focus for:
- understanding treatment of chronic illness
- multidisciplinary approach to care for the elderly
- maintenance and improvement of the patient's level of function, including independence and noninstitutional care
- development of flexible treatment plans
- practice of appropriate referral
The Center presently serves more than 1500 patients. Services include routine medical care, minor surgery, geriatric psychiatry services, sexual dysfunction evaluation, and nutrition and pharmacotherapy counseling. Other patient services are available through the ECU Family Medicine Center.
Teaching Nursing Home
Golden Living Center in Greenville has been the site of the Department of Family Medicine's teaching nursing home project for over 20 years. The Department of Family Medicine is responsible for approximately 90 nursing home patients and supervises learners at different levels and in different disciplines, including:
- family medicine residents
- internal medicine residents
- physician assistant students
- clinical pharmacy residents and students
Our goal is to teach care of the elderly that is compassionate, comprehensive, and cost effective.
Hospital and Outpatient Rehabilitation Center
An understanding of rehabilitative principles is essential in the total management of geriatric patients. Through care of patients in the nursing home and both inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation services in the hospital, fellows have an opportunity to apply rehabilitative principles to the treatment of conditions such as stroke, hip fracture, arthritis, Parkinson's disease, and cardiopulmonary disorders.
The home care component of training provides experience in assessment protocols for patients, their home environment, and their family and social support systems in order to develop an appropriate management plan, help the patient and family set goals for improving the quality of life and care, and to evaluate patient progress. Home visits are scheduled several times a month.
Vidant Medical Center (formerly Pitt County Memorial Hospital) is the only hospital in the county and serves as an acute care referral center for the 29-county region. Private physicians make up half the medical staff at the hospital, giving fellows a balance of contact with community physicians and university faculty attendings.
The hospital is licensed for 860 beds, and is the only Level I Trauma Center in eastern North Carolina. Specialized facilities include the Regional Rehabilitation Center, Children's Hospital of Eastern North Carolina, the Leo W. Jenkins Cancer Center, and the Heart Center.
Inpatient Hospice House
Sometimes hospice patients have symptoms that are difficult to manage at home. At inpatient hospice, patients receive 24 hour-a-day care to maximize comfort. Patients and their families can be together as hospice staff work to stabilize a patient's symptoms while providing comfort and support. Family members may spend the night in the patient's room, and there are no restrictions on the number of family members who may stay with patients. Geriatric fellows work closely with the hospice medical director and the interdisciplinary team.
Each fellow collaborates closely with faculty members to design, conduct, analyze, and present a clinical research project during the fellowship year. Fellows can choose a topic that interests them, or work on an existing research project. There are extensive resources with knowledgeable faculty members within the geriatric division and the research division. Librarians and research experts from the ECU IRB office will also aide with research projects. Many fellows present their research in poster session during the annual meeting of the American Geriatrics Society or publish in medical journals.