Geriatrics for Specialists Initiative

Since 1994, the Geriatrics-for-Specialists Initiative (GSI) has conducted collaborative activities with numerous organizations and leaders in academic medicine, all designed to increase awareness of and knowledge in the care of older adults among surgical and related medical specialists. 

Our mission is to improve the wellbeing of America’s older adults by increasing specialty physicians’ competence in geriatrics. Our specific goals are to:

  • Identify and support specialty faculty in promoting geriatrics training and research within their own professional disciplines.
  • Assist professional certifying bodies and professional societies in improving the ability of their constituencies to care for older adults.
  • Enhance the geriatrics knowledge and expertise of practicing surgeons and medical specialists through continuing medical education, maintenance of certification programs, and quality measures that help to improve the care that they provide to frail older adults.
  • Improve the amount and quality of geriatrics education received by specialist trainees.
  • Create an independent, sustainable collaboration in which the participating societies, and their respective training and certification programs, will continue to carry out the GSI’s mission and goals.


About Our Work

Learn more about the work of the AGS GSI in a new series of articles published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society:


American College of Surgeons Fellow

Building upon a successful collaboration with the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and The John A. Hartford Foundation, the GSI has made two awards since 2011 to support fellows developing the following best-practice guidelines:


Clinical Guideline on Post-Operative Delirium

In October 2014, AGS released the Clinical Practice Guideline for Postoperative Delirium in Older Adults to enable healthcare professionals and hospital systems to implement actionable, evidence-based measures to prevent and treat one of the most common postoperative complications in older adults. A multi-specialty, multi-disciplinary expert panel developed the guideline, which was funded through a grant from The John A. Hartford Foundation through the GSI.


Developing a Geriatric Emergency Department Collaborative

Developing a Geriatric Emergency Department Collaborative (GEDC) launched in January 2016 in collaboration with the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), Emergency Nurses Association (ENA), and the Society of Academic Emergency Medicine (SAEM), with funding from The John A. Hartford Foundation and West Health.

The overarching goal of this project is to create a collaborative of leading healthcare systems that will implement and disseminate best practices in geriatric emergency medicine with the goal of improving the quality of care that older adults receive in the Emergency Department.


Coalition for Quality in Geriatric Surgery

A project of the ACS, the Coalition for Quality in Geriatric Surgery works to improve the surgical care of older adults by establishing a verifiable quality improvement program with standards based on evidence and focused on what matters most to individual older adults. This project builds on the ACS/AGS pre- and peri-operative guidelines for care of older adults.


Geriatrics for Specialists Book

Published by Springer in Fall 2016, Geriatrics for Specialists is the first book of its kind to provide comprehensive knowledge to specialists and associated generalists who care for older adults. The book is a reflection of the 20 years of work conducted under the GSI.