University of Southern Indiana
  • Dementia-Friendly Communities
    subheading titleDementia-Friendly Communities

    Collaborating with community organizations for resources and education.

  • Age-Friendly Primary Care Clinics
    subheading titleWhat Matters to You?

    Connecting Deaconess primary care clinics with social service sectors.

  • Minka Learning Lab
    subheading titleMinka Learning Lab

    Discover USI's Learning Lab for Living Well, housed in the Minka!

  • bOlder curriculum
    subheading titleGerontology at USI

    Bold curriculum changes related to gerontology.

  • Evidence-Based Programs
    subheading titleEvidence-Based Programs

    Increasing access to community-based programs to improve health outcomes for older adults.

  • Telehealth
    subheading titleTelehealth

    Resources for students and faculty to further the knowledge and accessibility of telehealth.

USI Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP)

The purpose of the USI Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP) is to improve health outcomes for older adults in underserved communities of southwest Indiana by developing a workforce to maximize patient and family engagement and integrate geriatrics into primary care.

GWEP-CC Case Study: The Journey to Age-Friendly Primary Care

A case study written by the USI GWEP has been published to Geriatrics Care Online (GCO) as a new resource to other practices interested in the Age-Friendly movement. The authors are Dr. Kevin Valadares, Professor and Chair of Graduate Health Administration at the University of Southern Indiana, and Robin Arnold, GWEP Clinical Quality Improvement Analyst with Deaconess Clinic, Evansville.

Becoming an Age-Friendly Health System entails providing a set of four evidence-based elements of high-quality care, known as the “4Ms,” to all older adults in your system: What Matters, Medication, Mentation, and Mobility. In the USI GWEP's case study, Valadares and Arnold focus on the What Matters component of the 4M structure through a multimodal advance care planning (ACP) initiative within a primary care clinic. The ACP process supports older adults in understanding and sharing their personal values, life goals and preferences regarding future medical care. The GWEP's ACP initiative is implemented within the Deaconess Clinic through the Medicare Annual Wellness Visit (AWV) for patients 65 years old and older. This AWV has no out-of-pocket costs to patients, and it includes optional assessment questions concerning ACP. In addition, the USI GWEP's ACP initiative is attentive to creating a multimodal experience to engage patients in a series of “ACP touches” before and during the AWV and incorporates use of a patient-facing, web-based platform, PREPARETM for Your Care, to support the ACP process.

Background: GCO is an online resource to purchase American Geriatrics Society’s publications and products and to license online access to comprehensive content and topic-specific bundles of information tailored to meet specific needs. The GWEP-CC Age-Friendly Health Systems Case Study series has been published to GCO as a tool available to all GCO users. Learn more about the American Geriatrics Society.

Read the Full Case Study

Learn more about the GWEP and Advance Care Planning

Graduate Certificate - Administrator-in-Training (AIT) Residency Program

The first two students to enroll in USI’s Graduate Certificate – Administrator-in-Training (AIT) Residency Program have passed the National Long Term Care Administrators Board (NAB) exam on their first attempt and have accepted jobs as health facility administrators in southern Indiana.

Morgan Branning and Jennie Deyne both earned an MBA degree from USI in 2021 and started the AIT program during the 2021 Fall Semester. They are in the process of completing nine credit hours of online courses and successfully completed the required 1,040 hours of residency at their respective nursing facilities. Prior to taking the NAB exam, they attended exam prep sessions at USI with Karla Diekemper, Instructor in Gerontology.

The addition of the Graduate Certificate – AIT Residency Program in Fall 2021 and the inclusion of the AIT residency component in USI’s new Bachelor of Science in Health Administration degree program are both initiatives of the USI GWEP.

Read more ... 

New Activity Professionals Certificate
The Activity Professionals Certificate Program aligns with the University of Southern Indiana (USI) mission/strategic plan and USI’s federally funded Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP) initiative by increasing the educational programs to prepare students for a career working with older adults.

This program enables USI students to acquire a certification by successfully completing four classes. The certification increases their knowledge and marketability while supporting the workforce needs in the state of Indiana.

As per the ISDH regulations, 90 hours of instruction are required for the Activity Professionals certification, and this is accomplished through the 4 courses:

  • GERO 215 Intro to Global Aging & Healthcare - 3 credit hours (offered fall, spring, summer)
  • GERO 316 Age Related Health Changes - 3 credit hours (offered fall)
  • GERO 425 Health Facilities Admin - 3 credit hours (offered spring)
  • GERO 427 Activity Professionals Certificate - 1 credit hour (offered fall)

Learn more ... 

Living Longer/Living Better Guide
According to the Indiana Commission on Aging, the Hoosier state is in the midst of making “some bold moves” with managed care for older adults who need long term services and supports and who qualify for Medicaid. As a result, more older adults who need assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs) will be living at home. In response to these changes, the Indiana Commission on Aging developed the Living Longer/Living Better Guide to encourage local communities to become more age and dementia friendly. The guide was recently featured in a podcast hosted by Qsource, which is a healthcare quality improvement organization.

Three representatives from the USI College of Nursing and Health Professions were recently invited to be guest speakers on three different episodes in the four-part series. Learn more.

Events           Learn More          Innovation  

Proud Partners:

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $3,691,706 million with zero percentage financed with nongovernmental sources. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.

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