John A. Hartford Foundation Instrumental in Geriatrics, Study Finds

John A. Hartford Foundation Instrumental in Geriatrics, Study Finds

The John A. Hartford Foundation has played a vital role in improving the care of older adults in the United States, an evaluation commissioned by the foundation finds. 

Based on a quantitative assessment of the foundation's output and impact, a qualitative assessment of its cumulative impact, and a combined assessment of trends data and interviews with experts, the report, Assessment of the Accomplishments and Impact of the John A. Hartford Foundation's Grantmaking in Aging and Health 1983-2015 (61 pages, PDF), found that the foundation and the nearly six hundred grants it awarded over almost three decades "led the way in creating a whole new field in American health care, essentially from scratch."  

Conducted by Isaacs/Jellinek and summarized in the journal Health Affairs, the evaluation also credited JAHF with supporting geriatrics training for faculty in medicine, nursing, and social work and producing a corps of top-notch geriatrics academics; helping ensure that geriatrics training was included in the professional education of all practicing physicians, nurses, and social workers who provide care to older adults; supporting the adoption of new models of care, including the Beers List, NICHE, the Transitional Care Model, and  palliative care, which has now been widely adopted by the U.S. healthcare system; and helping reduce the stigma of caring for older people that had kept geriatrics on the margins of health care.

"This assessment confirms what we've long believed — that the John A. Hartford Foundation is making a meaningful difference in the care of older adults through strategic, long-term collaboration with a diverse array of partners, evidence-based learnings, and a proven track record of results," said JAHF president Terry Fulmer.