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Office for Aging Research and Health Services

The Office for Aging Research and Health Services (OARHS) supports URMC’s contributions as a leader regionally, nationally, and internationally in the development and delivery of innovative approaches to care for our rapidly growing population of older adults.

OARHS brings together the leading innovators in the field of geriatrics and gerontology in the Rochester area and nationally.

It serves as a resource to investigators developing their programs of research in geriatrics, to program leaders and providers in developing innovative clinical solutions for the care of older adults, and to educators preparing a workforce to help address the needs of the older adults population in our community, region, and nationwide.



Roybal Center Receives NIH Grant

Led by Kim van Orden, PhD and Kathi Heffner, PhD, the Rochester Roybal Center for Social Ties & Aging Research was awarded a P30 grant from The National Institutes of Health and the National Institute of Aging to support the development of behavioral interventions that promote social connectedness in caregivers of a family member with dementia. Learn more on the Rochester Roybal Center for Social Ties & Aging Research page.

aging research Kim Van Orden

Kim Van Orden, PhD

Kathi Heffner division of aging

Kathi Heffner, PhD



Next Monday: Learn about the UR Aging Institute at the Board Annual Program »


Led by Geriatrics & Aging Division Chief Annette Medina-Walpole, the institute connects the work of clinicians, educators and investigators focused on one mission: to promote vitality in aging. The Medical Center Board invites the URMC community to attend its annual program on Jan. 27 to learn more about the institute's mission and how it leverages the University's strengths in three key areas. 5 to 6 p.m., Class of '62 Auditorium. Add to Outlook calendar.



Tailor-made for Older Adults, New Tools Improve Oncologist-Patient Relations

A Wilmot Cancer Institute-led study shows that when physicians fully appreciate the concerns of older adults with cancer, such as function and forgetfulness, it elevates patient care and satisfaction.


Alzheimer's: Biogen to Ask FDA to Approve Aducanumab as First Treatment for Early Stage of Disease

Newsweek, October 22
Biotechnology company Biogen, which says it has developed the first drug to treat Alzheimer’s disease, plans to ask the US Food and Drug Administration for the medication to be approved for use in the US. Lead author of the study Anton Porsteinsson, the William B. and Sheila Konar Professor of Psychiatry and director of the University’s Alzheimer’s Disease Care, Research, and Education Program, said that the findings provide “new hope for the medical community, the patients, and their families."


Latest Cleared Concepts Preview Possible Future Funding Priorities of NIA

They include:


Research Will Employ Data Science to Determine Suicide Risk in Elderly

A new research program will harness machine learning and data science to sift through tens of millions of records of U.S. nursing home and assisted living residents to identify risk factors for suicide. (click here to view article)


Living Near Your Grandmother Has Evolutionary Benefits

Nicole Xu for NPR

'Grandmother Hypothesis':

Read about why Grandmothers may hold the key to human evolution.



Can Facebook Keep us Healthy as We Age?

As we age, communicating within virtual communities, like Facebook groups, may help stave off social isolation and its associated negative health effects, according to preliminary research. A UR CTSI Population Health Research postdoctoral fellow is studying how technology and social media could become tools to improve the lives of vulnerable elderly populations. Read the full story on the UR CTSI Stories Blog.


“Elderly”—an outdated and potentially harmful term

The term elderly has no clear meaning and evokes stereotypes. Javad Hekmat-panah argues its use must be avoided in medicine. (click here to view blog)


Changing ‘the tragedy narrative’: Why a growing camp is promoting a more joyful approach to Alzheimer’s

An approach — giving the illness a nickname, smoothly zigging after hitting a zag —  with a growing camp of people determined to approach dementia care differently, coming at it with a sense of openness, playfulness and even wonder.   (click here to view the article from the Washington Post)


Complementary Resources to Help Reduce Ageism

The way Americans currently think about aging creates obstacles to productive practices and policies. In response, and in collaboration with seven other leading associations serving the field of Aging, the American Society on Aging (ASA) is pleased to share a set of resources designed to help members and stakeholders join a movement to reframe the dialogue around aging, with the goal of reversing ageist assumptions about older adults. Through a two-year research initiative, our collaborative has learned that as Americans live longer and healthier lives, society needs to adjust both attitudes toward aging and the systems that support well-being in later life. Our Gaining Momentum Toolkit is now available so you and your organization can become part of the movement to reframe how the public views older adults. This work is SO important and our aspirations can only be achieved through large-scale adoption of the principals and tools we provide to you today. (read more...)

Funding Opportunities

Please check back for updates........

Other Opportunities

U.S. National Academy of Medicine, Healthy Longevity Global Grand Challenge

As part of the Healthy Longevity Global Competition, the U.S. National Academy of Medicine ("NAM"), with support from Johnson & Johnson Innovation, will issue up to 24 Catalyst Awards per year between 2020 and 2022.  Catalyst Awards will reward bold, new, potentially transformative ideas to improve the physical, mental, or social well-being of people as they age, in a measurable and equitable way. The American Federation for Aging Research (AFAR) will collaborate with the NAM on the application and scientific review process.
Applications for  Round 1 are being accepted until February 24 at 11:59 pm ET. For more information and to apply, visit the AFAR website here.


Applications Open for Geriatric Faculty Scholars

Applications are being accepted for Geriatric Faculty Scholars, a challenge grant awarded to current junior Medical Center faculty with a specific interest in interprofessional geriatric education and practice. Applications must be submitted by Monday, February 3. Learn more and apply.


The Finger Lakes Geriatric Education Center is pleased to partner with ASAM to present the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder Course including the waiver qualifying requirements.

Online registration link coming soon.  Questions regarding the training can be directed to: