Office of Healthy Aging Research, Education, and Services (OHARES)

In an effort to promote healthy aging through the advancement of evidence-based and interdisciplinary initiatives (i.e., research, education, and service initiatives) for diverse populations of older people, OHARES provides a current list of websites (see below) that aim to advance healthy aging and to increase the overall well-being and quality of life for older people in the eastern seaboard of North Carolina, the state at large, and the United States.  OHARES is always looking for useful links to websites that can advance such goals and objectives.  To this end, we hope that you find the links below to be of assistance.  If you are aware of links at the local, state, national, or international levels that should be added to our current listing, please feel free to send the web address(es) to our office at and we will list the links on this webpage.

Main National Links

Department of Health and Human Services - Administration on Aging (AoA) - Home Page
This is a nice resource for information on older people and their families, emergency preparedness for older persons with and without disabilities, statistics regarding America's aging population, Administration on Aging (AoA) programs, outcome evaluations of AoA programs, grant opportunities, and AoA funded resource centers. This AoA web link provides information on evidence-based behavioral interventions that fit well with the concept of health aging and (thus) the mission of OHARES. Please take a moment to review the behavioral interventions for older adults that are being documented as effective in this website.

Department of Health and Human Services - National Institute on Aging - Home Page
The National Institute on Aging (NIA) is one of the 27 Institutes and Centers within the National Institute of Health. It leads a broad scientific effort to understand the nature of aging and to extend the healthy, active years of life. That said, the NIA is the primary Federal agency supporting and conducting Alzheimer's disease research, but it also provides a myriad of materials related to NIA initiatives, health disparities for different socio-economic groups, and behavioral and social research related to the health and mental health of older people in the United States.

Human Resources and Services Administration - Rural Health - Main Web Portal
This link connects to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration for Rural Health. It provides important information about rural health, grants to support health-care initiatives in rural areas, information on policies and resources for rural health care, and links to resources that are of importance to the advancement of rural health. Given that 62 million residents live in rural America, this web link will have utility for any person or organization that is looking to advance health and mental health services in rural areas (e.g., Eastern North Carolina).

Rural Health Research - Main Web Portal
This web portal provides access to Rural Health Research Centers (RHRCs) and research related to rural health for underserved populations to include aging people in rural America.

Agency for Health Care Research and Quality (AHRQ) - Home Page
The AHRQ web portal offers you resources to advance the integration of behavioral health and primary care, and fosters a collaborative environment for dialogue and discussion to advance such goals. Conceptually, models of integrated care aim to integrate primary care with specialty care, mental health, and substance abuse treatment. Given the high prevalence of comorbidity among aging and older individuals, the AHRQ provides a lot of useful information regarding integrated care.

Health Information - Main Web Portal
This web portal provides access to a federal website developed for health information technology (IT). This website also disseminates information from the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for Health Information Technology. This website and the ONC are going to play very important roles relative to the advancement of health IT in the United States. The website provides access to information for health care providers, health care professionals, patients and their families, policymakers, researchers, and federal advisory committees (FACAs). Anyone interested in understanding more about the health IT movement would be well advised to review this web portal.

United States Senate - Special Committee on Aging
The Senate Special Committee on Aging was first established in 1961 as a temporary committee. It was granted permanent status on February 1, 1977. While special committees have no legislative authority, they can study issues, conduct oversight of programs, and investigate reports of fraud and waste. This committee does just that and more. Over the years, the Committee has been in the thick of the debate on issues of central concern to older Americans. As the baby boom generation begins to retire en masse, the work of the Special Committee on Aging has only just begun. Please consider visiting this web portal for information regarding his committee's current activities and hearings.

The Gerontological Society of America
The Mission of The Gerontological Society of America is 1) to promote the conduct of multi- and interdisciplinary research in aging by expanding the quantity of gerontological research and by increasing its funding resources; 2) To disseminate gerontological research knowledge to researchers, to practitioners, and to decision and opinion makers; and 3) To promote, support, and advocate for aging education, and education and training in higher education. The major objectives of this mission are: 1) To promote scientific study of aging in both the biomedical and behavioral/social sciences; 2) To stimulate communications among scholarly disciplines, and among professionals including researchers, teachers, administrators, and others; 3) To disseminate research findings by means of its publications; 4) To expand education in aging, including the promotion of educational programs in gerontology; 5) To foster application of research in the development of public policy; and 6) To develop the qualifications of gerontologists by setting high standards of professional ethics, conduct education, and achievement.

The Association for Gerontology in Higher Education
The Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (aka AGHE) is the international leader in advancing education on aging and is the only institutional membership organization devoted primarily to gerontology and geriatrics education since 1974. AGHE's mission is two-fold: (1) To advance gerontology and geriatrics education in academic institutions; and (2) To provide leadership and support of gerontology and geriatrics education faculty and students at education institutions. AGHE and its members are strongly committed to the well-being of older adults. Together, AGHE and aging-studies programs in institutions of higher education strive to: (1) prepare service delivery personnel who will work directly with older adults; (2) train educators who specialize in the physical, psycho-social, and policy domains of aging; (3) educate the society at large about the processes of aging and the implications of an aging society; and (4) instruct older adults seeking to maximize their options in a complex and challenging age.

Alliance for Aging Research
The Alliance for Aging Research,, is the leading non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating the pace of scientific discoveries and their application to vastly improve the universal human experience of aging and health. The Alliance was founded in 1986 in Washington, DC, and has since become a valued advocacy organization and a respected influential voice with policymakers.

American Federation for Aging Research
The American Federation for Aging Research (AFAR) is a national non-profit organization whose mission is to support and advance healthy aging through biomedical research. AFAR focuses its activities on these major initiatives: 1) identifying and funding a broad range of cutting-edge research most likely to increase knowledge about healthy aging, 2) attracting more physicians to specialize in geriatric medicine to meet the demands of an aging population with expert health care, 3) creating opportunities for scientists and clinicians to share knowledge and exchange ideas to drive innovation in aging research, 4) providing information to the public on new medical findings that can help people live longer lives while decreasing their susceptibility to disease and disability.

American Society on Aging
The ASA offers professional education, publications, and online information and training resources. The breadth and depth of information available from the ASA is extensive relative to their conferences, webinars, and publications. Please consider visiting this web portal for more information about this non-profit organization.

The National Academy on an Aging Society
As a non-partisan public policy institute, The National Academy on an Aging Society (NAAS) operates under the umbrella of the Gerontological Society of America (GSA) and aims to provide clear and unbiased research and analysis focused on public policy issues arising from the aging of America's and the world's population. The goal of their research is to enhance the quality of debates about the challenges and opportunities of an aging population by presenting findings from the policy and academic communities in language aimed at the general reader.

National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities
The National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD) was founded in 1964 under the name National Association of State Units on Aging (NASUA). In 2010, the organization changed its name to NASUAD in an effort to formally recognize the work that the state agencies were undertaking in the field of disability policy and advocacy. Today, NASUAD represents the nation's 56 state and territorial agencies on aging and disabilities and supports visionary state leadership, the advancement of state systems innovation and the articulation of national policies that support home and community based services for older adults and individuals with disabilities. The NASUA's mission aims to design, improve, and sustain state systems delivering home and community based services and supports for people who are older or have a disability, and their caregivers.

National Council on Aging (NCOA)
The National Council on Aging (NCOA) is a leading nonprofit service and advocacy organization representing older adults and the community organizations that serve them. Their goal is to improve the health and economic security of 10 million older adults by 2020. They have been active for more than 60 years with the intent of giving older adults tools and information to stay healthy and secure; they have also advocated for programs and policies to improve the lives of all seniors, especially the most vulnerable. Their vision aims to create a just and caring society in which each of us, as we age, lives with dignity, purpose, and security. Their mission aims to improve the lives of millions of older adults, especially those who are vulnerable and disadvantaged.

American Psychological Association - Mental/Behavioral health and Older Americans
This website contains information from the APA's work on the mental and behavioral health of older people in the United States. Information is presented on the aging demography of the United States and the specific mental health needs of aging people. This website emphasizes the need to train the next generation of psychologists to work with aging people.

National Links for Integrated Care:

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - The Vocabulary of Integrated Services
This part of the AHRQ web portal offers you access to documents that explain the concepts and definitions behind the movement to integrate behavioral health and primary care. The terms and concepts as applied to this integration also apply to healthy aging, which often involves the integration of behavioral health care and primary care.

Agency for Health Care Research and Quality (AHRQ) - Integrated Behavioral Health Care Quality Measures
This part of the AHRQ web portal offers you access to The Atlas of Integrated Behavioral Health Care Quality Measures (the IBHC Measures Atlas), which aims to support the field of integrated behavioral health care measurement by: 1) presenting a framework for understanding measurement of integrated care; 2) providing a list of existing measures relevant to integrated behavioral health care; and 3) organizing the measures by the framework and by user goals to facilitate selection of measures.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - A Framework for Measuring Integration
This part of the AHRQ web portal offers you access to a framework for measuring the integration of behavioral health and primary care. This part of the AHRQ website provides a more advanced understanding of a framework that goes beyond brief concepts and definitions to a more specific set of observable and measurable functions. These can easily be adapted to older populations.

Substance Abuse and mental health Service Administration - HSRA Center for Integrated Health Solutions
This web portal provides access to the materials that aim to advance integrated treated within the context of population with substance abuse problems. Given the problem of poly-pharmacy among populations of older people with multiple chronic conditions (MCCs), this website provides the needed breadth and depth of information required to integrate mental health services for substance abuse with primary care. This material is very applicable to aging populations.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - An Empirical Study of Integrated Healthcare with Older People

Recent studies have shown that integrated behavioral health services for older adults in primary care improves health outcomes. This study examined the opinions of clinicians whose patients actually experienced integrated rather than enhanced referral care for depression and other conditions. Results indicate integrated care led to better communication between primary care clinicians and mental health specialists, less stigma for patients, and better coordination of mental and physical care. Among primary care clinicians who cared for patients that received integrated care or enhanced referral care, integrated care was preferred for many aspects of mental health care. For more information about this study, please use the link.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - An Article on Integrated Healthcare
This is a nice article from AHRQ that examines global barriers to integration, promising models of integrated care, and cost savings. For those who are new to this approach, this is a good primary on the topic of integrated care that seeks to join behavioral health care with primary care services.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - An Article on Integrated Healthcare
This article examines the placement of mental health specialists in primary care settings to enhances patient engagement. The study documented favorable results relative to evidence-based care. More specifically, "An integrated care program places mental and behavioral health specialists in more than 50 primary care locations to treat patients ages 65 years and older with depression or anxiety and those who engage in risky alcohol use. The model uses comprehensive assessments and promotes coordinated care planning and treatment based on chronic disease management principles and established treatment guidelines. The integrated approach was compared with an enhanced (i.e., better than usual care) specialty care referral model, and a study showed that the integrated model resulted in higher levels of patient engagement in treatment, comparable clinical results (except for symptom control in severely depressed patients), and lower overall costs." For more information, please use the link.

Improving Chronic - Models of Chronic Care
This website is great for chronic care models, which are very applicable to older populations. "Recent data show that more than 145 million people, or almost half of all Americans, live with a chronic condition. That number is projected to increase by more than one percent per year by 2030, resulting in an estimated chronically ill population of 171 million. Almost half of all people with chronic illness have multiple conditions. As a result, many managed care and integrated delivery systems have taken a great interest in correcting the many deficiencies in current management of diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, depression, asthma and others." This website provides fantastic access to chronic models of care for such populations.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - Coordinating Integrated Care
This AHRQ web portal provides information on funded studies that examined the enhancement of complex care through an integrated care coordination information system in Oregon. This is a magnificent example that highlights the importance of coordinating care in integrated systems.

National Links for Health Information Technology (IT):

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - The Integration of Health Information Technology into Primary Care
This AHRQ web portal provides information on the integration of health information technology (IT) into primary care. IT includes a variety of electronic methods that are used to manage information about people's health and health care, for both individual patients and groups of patients. The use of health IT can improve the quality of care, even as it makes health care more cost effective. Such systems have a lot of potential applications for older populations with chronic conditions and multiple chronic conditions. Please see this website for more details and information on the IT movement.

Health Information - Federally Funded Site to Highlight Benefits of H.I.T.
This is a wonderful website run by the federal government to highlight the benefits of health information technology (HIT) for the integration of data that joins behavioral health and primary care. Health informational technologies are developing quickly, especially as they apply to the care of chronic conditions and multiple chronic conditions; hence, this website is useful for those who wish to infuse HIT into integrated behavioral and primary care settings.

Health Information - Federally Funded Blog for Health Information Technology with a Focus on Rural Health
Read updates here from ONC's Rural Health team about how rural health care providers and hospitals nationwide are leveraging technology to optimize their communities' health systems and improve the quality of their care. This is a great blog for those who wish to integrate health information technology into rural health care systems.

Rural Health Research - Article on the A.C.A., Integrated Health in Rural Settings, and H.I.T.
This webpage provides links to research on rural health. This particular link provides access to an article by Drs. Griffin and Coburn entitled, "Integrated Care for Older Adults in Rural Communities." This is a great article for those interested in understanding more about how the Affordable Care Act affects outcomes in rural areas with integrated care systems. "Recognizing that traditional models of health care delivery and payment often produce fragmented and costly care and poor outcomes for those with the highest needs, many reforms under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) focus on realigning payment incentives and integrating care. These reforms presuppose the existence of supporting infrastructure and capacity, including dedicated care management staffing and health information technology [HIT] and exchange. With a focus on community-dwelling older adults in need of integrated physical, behavioral health services, and long term services and supports (LTSS), this brief reviews the opportunities and challenges these reform initiatives present for rural communities."

Health Information - How Rural Health Care Systems Access Grants for I.T.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) Rural Health Information Technology (Health IT) Task Force, specifically the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and the Health Resources and Services Administration, worked with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to ensure that rural health care providers can use USDA's Rural Development grants and loans to support the acquisition of health IT infrastructure. This link provides access to information about such grants and loans.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - Informational Portal on I.T. and H.I.P.P.A.
The materials in this website include the HIPAA privacy components of the Privacy and Security Toolkit developed in conjunction with the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC). The Privacy and Security Toolkit implements the principles in The Nationwide Privacy and Security Framework for Electronic Exchange of Individually Identifiable Health Information (Privacy and Security Framework). These guidance documents discuss how the Privacy Rule can facilitate the electronic exchange of health information.

The American Medical Association - Health Information Technology Portal
This web portal provides the AMA's materials on health information technology (IT). In contrast to the other health IT portals identified above, this information herein provides the MD's point of view. Emphases are on Medicare and Medicaid incentive/penalty programs for health IT and electronic health record (EHR) programs. Information is also available for Health Information Exchanges (HIEs), which are entities that bring together health care stakeholders within a defined geographic area and govern the electronic sharing of health information among them for the purpose of improving health and care in that community.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - Link for Health Information Technology
This web portal provides the AHRQ's view of health IT. AHRQ's Health IT Portfolio develops and disseminates evidence and evidence-based tools about the impact of health IT on health care quality. To accomplish this, the Portfolio: 1) anticipates the future needs of the health care system and supports development of innovative health IT solutions; 2) identifies and fills current gaps in knowledge about health IT; and 2) leverages the capability of health IT to improve the quality, safety, efficiency and effectiveness of health care. This is a great complement to the federal and non-profit material on health IT.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - Health I.T. Tools and Resources
This web portal provides the access to the AHRQ's health IT tools and resources. This is a very well organized website that includes tools and resources for almost all things related to health IT. If you are interested in health IT, it is suggested that you spend a solid day reading all of the material that is accessible here. It is comprehensive and useable in a practical sense for academics, policymakers, and practitioners.

National Links - Dissemination and Implementation Science

National Institute of Health - Dissemination and Implementation - Funding Priorities
This link brings you to the National Institute of Health's Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research. Herein, you will find links that describe their work on dissemination and implementation research, which includes a myriad of funding opportunities.

Training Institute for Dissemination and Implementation Research in Health - Funded Through the National Institute of Health
This link brings you to the Training Institute for Dissemination and Implementation Research in Health at Washington University, St. Louis, MO. It contains a number of excellent links to key materials that help the reader understand the often overlooked differences between dissemination and implementation research.

National Institute of Health - Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research Core Areas for Research as Funded by OBSSR
This website shows you the priorities (i.e., core areas of research) for the NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research. This website can be very helpful when trying to understand federal priorities for behavioral and social science research that might be applicable for older populations.

Implementation Science - Main Website
This website provides access to an open source journal that provides free access to articles on implementation studies. It can be very helpful when looking at all aspects of implementation science.

Center for Research in Implementation Science and Prevention (CRISP) - Main Website
This website is devoted the University of Colorado's Center for Research in Implementation Science and Prevention (CRISP). The Center for Research in Implementation Science and Prevention (CRISP) is one of three new national centers funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) that focuses on improving clinical preventive services within primary care practice. CRISP brings together expertise in implementation of preventive services, practice-based research networks (PBRNs) and national authorities in innovative health information technology (HIT).

University of Connecticut's Center for Health, Intervention, and Prevention (CHIP)
The Center for Health, Intervention, and Prevention (CHIP) is a multidisciplinary research center dedicated to the study of the dynamics of health risk behavior and the processes of health behavioral change in individuals and targeted at-risk populations. This particular part of their website provides access to links for funding and other such research-related opportunities as applied to dissemination and implementation science.

University of Washington - Implementation Sciences Website - Main Portal
The School of Public Health at the University of Washington houses a website that emphasizes dissemination and implementation science. The main parts of this webpage are helpful to anyone interested in the use of dissemination and implementation science to inform the treatment of veterans and other at-risk populations.

Center for Health Education, Dissemination, and Implementation Research (CHEDIR)
CHEDIR aims to align evidence-based and adult learning principles with elements of successful diffusion of innovation and organizational improvement strategies to develop and evaluate methods of translating evidence into sustainable practice. This website is devoted to this mission. It includes access to a variety of tools and resources that are available free-of-charge.

Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences - ICTS
ICTS emphasizes research on dissemination and implementation as a core area of work for this institute. More materials are available at this website regarding such work at Washington University in St. Louis.

National Links - Other Strategic Issues, Initiatives, and Funding:

Department of Health and Human Services - Administration on Aging - Behavioral Health
This website contains AoA materials on behavioral health for older populations. The website emphasizes mental and emotional well-being, and choices and actions that affect wellness. Issues that are addressed include depression, substance abuse and misuse, and suicidal thoughts. Materials in this website can be used to help older adults with and without disabilities to maintain their health and well-being through programs that maintain and enhance emotional health, prevent substance abuse/misuse, and prevent suicide.

Department of Health and Human Services - National Institute on Aging - Strategic Plan
This link provides you with access to the NIA’s strategic plan for the following: (1) research on healthy aging, disease, and disability; (2) interventions to reduce disease and disability and improve the health and quality of life of older adults; (3) development, implementation, and evaluation of interventions to prevent and treat Alzheimer’s disease, other dementias of aging, and the aging brain; (4) research on the consequences of an aging society and the identification of needed information to inform intervention development and policy decisions; and (5) research and interventions that reduce health disparities and eliminate health inequities among older adults.

Department of Health and Human Services - National Institute on Aging - NIA Initiatives
In addition to the research priorities of its intramural and extramural divisions, NIA is involved in a number of special initiatives that expand and enhance its mission. These initiatives often involve other NIH Institutes and Centers, as well as other organizations and agencies involved in research on health and aging. More specifically, currently funded initiatives include minority aging and health disparities, trans-National Institutes of Health research activities, translational research, comparative effectiveness research, global aging, and American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

Department of Health and Human Services - National Institute on Aging - Health Disparities
The NIA’s Office of Special Populations provides funding for research that advances our understanding of health disparities that are associated with a broad, complex, and interrelated array of factors. Diagnosis, progression, response to treatment, caregiving, and overall quality of life may each be affected by race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status (SES), age, education, occupation, and other as yet unknown lifetime and lifestyle differences. Thus, the NIA provides support to examine such issues and interventions that address such issues.

Department of Health and Human Services - National Institute on Aging - Research
The NIA’s Division of Behavioral and Social Research (BSR) supports social, behavioral, and economic research and research training on the processes of aging at both the individual and societal level. BSR fosters cross-disciplinary research, at multiple levels from genetics to cross-national comparative research, and at stages from basic through translational.

Department of Health and Human Services - National Institute on Aging - Behavioral and Social Research
The NIA’s Division of Behavioral and Social Research (BSR) is broken into a number of divisions that are listed in this website. Specific divisions and areas of inquiry include the following: (1) behavioral medicine and interventions, (2) behavioral genetics of aging, (3) cognitive aging, (4) family and interpersonal relationships, (5) psychological development and integrative science, (6) demography and epidemiology, (7) economics of aging, (8) Epidemiology and Population Genetics of Aging, and (9) health systems.

State Links:

North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (Main Page: Older Adults)
This is North Carolina’s main webpage for state-level links to various services for older people with and without disabilities. It literally covers almost everything that is state funded in NC, and other issues that are applicable to older populations.

North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services (NCDAAS)
This is North Carolina’s central office for all things related to aging and adult services. The Division of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS) works to promote independence and enhance the dignity of North Carolina's older adults, persons with disabilities, and their families through a community-based system of opportunities, services, benefits, and protections; to ready younger generations to enjoy their later years; and to help society and government plan and prepare for the changing demographics. That said, this web portal provides access to links regarding adult day-care and health programs , Alzheimer's Disease and other dementias, demography and planning, employment, family caregiver support, health, housing, home improvement, long term care options, ombudsman programs, senior centers, senior rights protections, services for older adults and people with disabilities . This is truly a well-constructed and informative web portal.

Local Links:

Pitt County Council on Aging
This web portal provides access to information from the Pitt County (NC) Council on Aging (COA). More specifically, it provides access to information regarding (1) the Board of Directors, (2) the Pitt COA Foundation, (3) Services, (4) Programs and Activities, (5) Announcements, (6) Upcoming Events, and (7) Hot Topics. For people living in and around East Carolina University, this website is a must-visit portal for all services offered by the local office.