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The Emory Center for Health in Aging (CHA) focuses on collaborative partnerships within and between universities; strong community outreach with local academic, governmental, and community-based organizations; and sound science to allow seniors to age safely and successfully in their homes and communities.  To accomplish this, we must address individual as well as societal problems associated with aging.  The Emory CHA affords an interdisciplinary perspective where School and Institutional boundaries can be more easily overcome than a program within a single unit.  Under the umbrella of “health in aging”, the CHA has developed various inter-institutional and multi-organizational initiatives which show remarkable potential for future growth.

Following the first full year (FY2011) of its existence, the Center for Health in Aging is poised to strengthen its existing partnerships and create expanded yet sustainable programs that incorporate local, statewide, and regional relationships as we move into FY2012. We have organized our efforts into four general categories: outreach, education, advocacy and community based participatory research. We fully intend to use our unique position as an interdisciplinary, inter-institutional organization to continue to build cross-cutting partnerships and to develop comprehensive programs which touch on all aspects of aging, from science to social policy.

Progress to Date

The Center for Health in Aging has garnered nearly $2.4M in external funding from federal and private sources in the last year. As a nascent Center, we largely concerned ourselves with establishing community, university, and governmental partnerships and have pursued funding opportunities from federal and private sources to develop initiatives that thrive on collaboration with many agencies and/or disciplines.

The Atlanta Regional Geriatric Education Center (ARGEC), an interdisciplinary consortium led by the Center for Health in Aging and consisting of various Emory programs, Georgia State University, Morehouse School of Medicine, and the Atlanta Regional Commission, has received approval for continued funds in 2011-2012. The DeKalb County/Emory Healthcare VALARI program, an emergency sheltering system for victims of elder abuse, sparked the CHA’s abuse prevention initiative, the Task force Against the Maltreatment of Elders” (TAME). TAME has been identified by national leaders in elder abuse prevention as a prime teaching and research group in elder abuse studies. With regard to state-level and policy organization affiliation, the CHA has become a member and host of the Older Driver’s Task Force as well as the Georgia Fall Prevention Coalition, both of which fall under the GA Department of Community Health’s Injury Prevention Program; CHA is an active and visible partner in the GA Department of Community Health Injury Advisory Committee as well (via TAME and CHA safer communities initiatives). We continue to build relationships with various DeKalb County Agencies, to include the “Lifelong DeKalb” imitative. Recently, the CHA was invited to join the Atlanta Regional Commission’s “Lifelong Communities” initiative, which serves as a policy and advisory committee to develop safer communities for older populations. Though this is not a complete listing of the Center’s current partnerships or activities, it may suffice for purposes of this summary to say that a large aspect of the center’s progress to date has been creating an awareness of the CHA among high-level organizations and stakeholders in the metro-Atlanta region; establishing the Center as a separate yet collaborative entity within Emory University; and successfully leveraging outside support to pursue our stated goals. Please see the “Partners” listing on the left of this page for a complete listing of our active partnerships.