URMC Geriatrician Named President of National Association

March 16, 2010

Paul R. Katz, M.D.

Paul R. Katz, M.D., professor of Medicine and chief of the Division of Geriatrics and Aging at the University of Rochester Medical Center, was elected president of the American Medical Directors Association (AMDA). The premier organization representing long-term care professionals, AMDA provides education, advocacy, information, and professional development to support the delivery of quality medicine in nursing homes.

AMDA’s 5,000 members join forces to develop best practices and collaborate with government agencies to assure quality care. The organization promotes clinical practice guidelines and a certification process for physicians who serve as nursing home medical directors.

“My personal vision is to make what we do as providers in nursing homes recognized and more credible, and to facilitate research to prove that our work makes a difference in quality in nursing homes,” Katz said. He is an advocate for the creation of a nursing home physician specialty, similar to the role hospitalists serve in acute-care settings.

"My personal vision is to make what we do as providers in nursing homes recognized and more credible, and to facilitate research to prove that our work makes a difference in quality in nursing homes."

“Physician care positively influences nursing home residents’ hospitalization rates, functional status and satisfaction. As we face a serious decline in the number of geriatricians, rather than accepting a diminished presence of physicians in nursing homes and finding alternative care models, it is time to fully consider, appropriately fund, and test the nursing home specialist model,” he said.

Katz was lead author of “Nursing Home Physician Specialists: A Response to the Workforce Crisis in Long-Term Care,” (Annals of Internal Medicine, March 17, 2009), which he describes as a call to action to explore the potential of nursing home specialists in improving the quality of care in nursing homes.

Lifespan will recognize Katz’s contributions at its March 18 Celebration of Aging, presenting him with the Carter Catlett Williams Award for Excellence in Long-Term Care/Aging Services.

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