FSU Establishes Geriatrics Department

Studies show physicians spend the majority of time with older patients. However, most medical schools do not require geriatric courses. Florida State University is working to change that, as well as the disturbing attitudes that accompany caring for the elderly.

Thursday morning is one of the busiest at the Senior Center in Tallahassee, but while the young at heart are working to stay healthy, many will tell you a trip to the doctor can be disheartening.

The latter is what Florida State University's College of Medicine wants to change. FSU is launching the state's first Department of Geriatrics, and to give you an idea nationally, only 14 of the country's 145 medical schools include geriatrics in their required courses.

Part of FSU's curriculum requires students to visit with the elderly in order to see them in a whole new light.

Dr. Brummel-Smith says proper geriatric care and understanding the needs of the elderly can sometimes mean the difference between life and death.

FSU is hoping at least five percent of its graduates will become geriatric specialists.