My passion is the care of older adults and public education.
I am a board-certified geriatric clinical pharmacist, with a specialty in rehabilitation medicine and neurocognitive diseases. Specifically, I help care for patients who are recovering from debilitating stroke and traumatic brain and spinal cord injury. I also specialize in helping older adults and their caregivers manage all of their medication-related concerns, including those of Alzheimer’s Disease, Vascular Dementia, and other related dementias.
Currently, I maintain an active practice in a county-operated, long-term care facility and am part of an interprofessional team of Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech/Language Pathologists, Medical Providers, Social Workers, and Nursing Staff. In addition to providing clinical consultation to the team and my patients, I have academic appointments at the school of pharmacy and the flagship medical center in my hometown. I also serve as a core clinical faculty member on the Medical Center’s Division of Geriatrics and Aging Clinical Competency Committee. This Committee is responsible for the recruitment, hiring, training, and ongoing evaluation of Geriatric Medicine Fellows. These professionals are medical doctors who have applied to a nationally competitive one-year clinical training program which immerses them in the specialty of geriatric medicine. Upon successful completion of the program, these physicians go on to lead other departments and agencies as attending physicians and Medical Directors.
My teaching philosophy is straightforward – I teach my physicians, pharmacists, and students to look very, very closely and carefully at the “whole person,” with all of their medical problems, unique issues, and clinical variables. Some well-meaning providers and pharmacists get too “tunnel-visioned” and focus on one or two specific medical problems the older adult has, and unintentionally miss other problems that could be contributing to their patients’ decline.
With thousands of medications approved for treating various diseases, patients can get overwhelmed – oftentimes, medical providers and busy pharmacists lack the time to properly educate their patients about their diseases and medications prescribed and dispensed to treat these diseases. Accompanying medication leaflets and medication guides can contain medical jargon and language that is overwhelming to the patient. Going online doesn’t help either – search results yield so many options, which can add to the confusion.
There is a real danger with search results directing you to unqualified individuals and web pages who do not have the professional training or expertise or state-issued license to practice. These parties are giving biased, medically inappropriate, and sometimes dangerous “advice” to regular people just wanting accurate information.
After years of seeing our beloved older adults floundering and being given outdated, inaccurate, or superficial information lacking in detail, I decided to create and launch the Geriatric Academy – dedicated to you – our Older Adults. The articles, eBook, and eCourse are presented in simple-to-understand language, providing all of the information you need about the medications you are taking, using evidence-based medicine that is legally approved for use by the US FDA, and endorsed and used by licensed medical professionals.
My ultimate goal is to reach as many older adults and their caregivers as I can and reduce easily preventable medication-associated hospital admissions and death through responsible and ethical education.