Nursing Health Services Research Agenda for the 2020s Report and Webinar

Health Teams for Frail Older Adults project team members Peter Buerhaus and Karen Donelan were part of a recently published report titled “Nursing Health Services Research Agenda for the 2020s.”  Produced based on a conference held in Bozeman, Montana in July of 2019 (attended by project team members Dr. Buerhaus, Dr. Donelan, & Dr. Joanne Spetz), the report aims to build a greater awareness of nursing health services research for the coming decade and outlines a research agenda for action. Recommendations outlined in the report include:

  1. Improve Access to Behavioral Health and the Effectiveness of Interventions and Services
  2. Improve Access to Primary Care and Improve the Effectiveness of Primary Care Delivery Systems
  3.  Improve Maternal Health Outcomes and the Delivery of Maternal Health Care
  4. Improve Care of the Nation’s Aging Population, Including Frail Adults
  5. Help Control Healthcare Spending, Reduce Costs, and Increase the Value of Nurses’ Contribution to Health and Health Care Delivery

The report was funded by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the Montana State University College of Nursing, and the Montana State University Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development. In addition to Drs. Buerhaus and Donelan, other co-authors of the report include Grant Martsolf (Pitt), Sean Clarke (NYU), Hilary Barnes (University of Delaware), Catherine Crawford Cohen (RAND), and Heather Tubbs Cooley (Ohio State).

Dr. Berrett-Abebe Leads HTFE Project Paper Published in Social Work in Health Care

Dr. Julie Berrett-Abebe recently led a paper from the Health Teams for Frail Elders project published by Social Work in Health Care titled “Physician and Nurse Practitioner Perceptions of Social Worker and Community Health Worker Roles in Primary Care Practices Caring for Frail Elders: Insights for Social Work.” The paper uses data from the 2018 Survey of Primary Care and Geriatric Clinicians to examine clinician perceptions of the role of social and community health workers in several different types of staffing models: practices that had neither social work nor community health work employees, practices that employed only social work, practices that employed only community health work, and practices that used both social work and community health work in their staffing models.

Fellow Health Teams for Frail Older Adults project team members Karen Donelan, Barbara Berkman, David Auerbach, and Peter Maramaldi are co-authors on the paper.



Health Teams for Frail Older Adults Project Team to Present Symposium at 2019 GSA Annual Scientific Meeting

The 2019 GSA Annual Scientific Meeting will be held in Austin, Texas from November 13th to 17th. Centered around the theme of “Strength in Age: Harnessing the Power of Networks”, the meeting will gather 4,000 aging professionals and experts from around the world to network and learn about the newest cutting-edge research in the field.

Several members of the Health Teams for Frail Older Adults Project Team will present a symposium panel titled “Optimal Health Professional Staffing of Primary Care and Geriatric Practices Serving Frail Older Adults”. Karen Donelan will serve as chair of the panel and Peter Maramaldi will be the discussant. Julie Berret-Abebe and Barbara Roberge will be joined by Karen Donelan (serving in this role in place of David Auerbach who had a scheduling conflict) as authors on the symposium panel. The panel will feature some of the team’s work with site visits in various regions across the country, as well as team social work research and content related to the team’s national survey of Primary Care and Geriatric Health Professionals of 2018.

Register for the conference or find out more about GSA on their website.


Donelan Part of Team Honored at MGH Clinical Research Day 2019

Clinical Research Day at Massachusetts General Hospital was held on October 3rd, 2019, bringing together investigators from across the MGH community to share their work and ideas. Karen Donelan, PI of the Health Teams for Frail Older Adults project, was part of a group honored with a Hospital-Wide Team Science Award for the project titled “Implementing a Community Health Worker Intervention at Hospital Discharge.” The team is led by Jocelyn Carter and also includes Anne Walton, Susan Hassan, and Anne Thorndike. Read more about the group’s work on the CHW intervention at hospital discharge and see all of the abstracts from MGH Clinical Research Day 2019.

Health Affairs Briefing on Aging and Health: Improving Care for Older Adults

On September 24th, Health Affairs hosted a briefing in Washington, D.C. featuring expert panelists from the publication’s Aging & Health articles, a series sponsored by the John A. Hartford Foundation. The briefing covered a range of topics, including moving serious illness care from hospital to the home, disparities in home and community-based care, and the impact of caregiving on spouses and the need for support. Speakers included Timothy G. Ferris of Massachusetts General Hospital, Ann Hwang, Tamara Konetzka, Bruce Leff, Katherine A. Ornstein, Brad Stuart, and Jennifer Wolff, as well as Terry Fulmer, President of the John A. Hartford Foundation. Watch the full policy briefing on the Health Affairs website and follow the hashtag “#AgingAndHealth” on social media platforms for more related to this series. Screen Shot 2019-09-30 at 7.08.21 AM
Image Credit: Health Affairs 

Integrating Social Care into the Delivery of Health Care, a Report from the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine

The National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine recently published a report on the integration of social care within the delivery of traditional health care services. Included in the report are a comprehensive range of aspects including issues related to social determinants of health, financing, and health information technology. The report also discusses workforce concerns, covering both the traditional health workforce as well as the workforce in social care. Interprofessional teams are especially highlighted as a means of integrating health and social care services. The report emphasizes the importance of education to best prepare professionals to tackle health issues upstream.

Health Teams for Frail Older Adults project team members Karen Donelan and Peter Maramaldi served as reviewers of the report. The full version of the report is available on the NASEM website.

The Mongan Institute at MGH Welcomes Dr. Christine Ritchie

The Mongan Institute at Massachusetts General Hospital recently welcomed Dr. Christine Ritchie as the Minaker Chair in Geriatrics and Director of Research for the Division of Palliative Care and Geriatric Medicine. Dr. Ritchie will also be working to establish the Center for Aging and Serious Illness Research within the Mongan Institute.

Prior to her arrival at MGH, Dr. Ritchie was the Harris Fishbon Distinguished Professor in Clinical Translational Research and Aging in the Division of Geriatrics in the Department of Medicine at the University of California San Francisco. A board-certified palliative care and geriatric physician, Dr. Ritchie has extensive clinical experience and a distinguished research profile related to aging and serious illness.

Read Dr. Ritchie’s recent publications and find out more about Dr. Ritchie’s experience and exciting new leadership role at MGH .

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Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation Patient Care Program: Mid-Course Review of the High-Need Patients Investigation

The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation has published a report that provides an overview of funder and grantee work in serious illness care, particularly as it relates to the high-need patient population. Available on their website, the document covers accomplishments, impact, durability and lessons learned from grants related to the priority areas in workforce and accountability and payment. The Health Teams for Frail Elders Project is a component of the Moore Foundation’s Workforce portfolio through the grant titled “Aging Patients and Health Professionals: New Roles in a Changing Health System”. Key themes from the report include:
1. The importance of paid and unpaid caregiver inclusion in health care teams
2. Filling the workforce gap in terms of knowledge, skill and supply to best provide serious illness care to an aging population
3. Improving communication skills of providers around late-life and end-of-life care

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National Forum of State Nursing Workforce Centers Annual Conference

The National Forum of State Nursing Workforce Centers was held in Denver CO at the historic Brown Palace Hotel from June 12-14.

Our team was well represented. Karen Donelan presented “Models of Care for Frail Older Adults Living in the Community”, bringing together recent research from two projects on the roles of nurses and social workers in care management. Peter Buerhaus was one of the Conference leaders, and gave the opening plenary address focusing on trends in the nursing workforce. Joanne Spetz’s team from UCSF was well represented with 5 presentations: “Strengthening the Nursing Workforce to Care for People with Serious Illness: Recommendations from a National Summit”, “Describing Workforce Demand: Three States’ Data Collection and Dissemination Approaches and Examples of Uses of the Data”, “Developing Regional Forecasts of Nursing Supply and Demand: Data and Methodological Challenges”, “The Effect of Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant Regulations on the Growth of the Opioid Treatment Workforce” and “Nurse Workforce Supply and Demand Projections: How Different Models and Source Data Influence the Results”. Other plenaries included David Cutler from the Department of Economics at Harvard and Lynda Benton from The Johnson&Johnson Campaign for Nursing’s Future, where exciting new initiatives are underway to support nursing innovation and leadership.

2019 Partners Population Health Research Symposium

cmichaelpophealthOn June 10th, we attended the 2019 Partners Healthcare Population Health Research Symposium in Somerville, MA. Posters presented by our team included “Social Work in Health and Aging: Past, Present, & Future” as well as “The Roles of Registered Nurse and Social Work Care Managers in Care Management.” Other projects of interest to our team on display at the symposium were “Implementing a Community Health Worker Intervention at Hospital Discharge” presented by Dr. Jocelyn Carter, director of the Community Care Transitions Initiative at MGH, “Collaborating with an External Vendor to  Implement a Home Based Care Management Program” presented by Maryann Vienneau, Program Director for iCMP and Palliative Care at Partners, and “Home Visits for Our Homebound, Best Care Model”, presented by Jennifer Wright, Population Health Program Director at Newton-Wellesley Hospital.