Late-life disability, defined as needing help with daily activities, is common, burdensome, and costly to patients, families, and society. Late-life disability is influenced by medical vulnerabilities (including comorbid illnesses, aspects of medical care, medicines, procedures, neuropsychiatric conditions, and behaviors), social vulnerabilities (social supports, financial resources, communication and literacy, and ethnicity), and their interaction. The UCSF OAIC will focus its efforts on addressing predictors, characteristics, and outcomes of late-life disability in these vulnerable populations at increased risk for disability or death. The overriding goal of the UCSF OAIC will be to improve the health care and quality of life of vulnerable older adults with or at risk for disability through the follwing aims: 1) Catalyze research on disability in vulnerable older persons at UCSF by serving as a hub that brings together scholars and leverages resources;2) Provide tangible, high-value support to funded projects at UCSF that stimulate new research on disability, and lead to new research opportunities for senior and junior investigators;3) Support pilot studies that accelerat science and lead to research funding in late life disability;4) Identify the future leaders of geriatrics research and support them with career development funding and exceptional mentoring;and 5) Develop a leadership and administrative structure that spurs interdisciplinary collaboration, making the OAIC greater than the sum of its parts. To achieve its aims, the UCSF OAIC will support 5 Cores under the leadership of PI Ken Covinsky. The LAC will provide leadership support for the entire UCSF OAIC. The RCDC will utilize the RCDC Scholars and Advanced Scholars Programs to identify, support, and nurture junior investigators who will become national leaders in aging research. The RDAC will enhance analyses of extramurally funded grants (External Projects), OAIC pilot projects, and RCDC projects, and will conduct a Development Project (DP). The DMAC will help investigators design studies with data sources ideal for disability research, support investigators adding disability measures to ongoing studies, and conduct a DP. The PESC will promote innovative and promising research that enhances our understanding in ways that can mitigate late-life disability, and that leads to ROI funding. By evaluating how medical and social vulnerabilities contribute to the disablement process, the UCSF OAIC will make a meaningful contribution to our understanding of how to best care for older adults who are at risk for or developing disability, advance research and guide clinical practice.
The UCSF OAIC will advance novel concepts, treatments, services, and, ultimately, preventive and therapeutic interventions for socially and medically vulnerable older adults at risk for or developing disability.
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