The US Census estimates that by the year 2020, persons age 65 years and older will constitute 22% of the population, almost double what was seen in the 2010 census. With the increasing population, there is a similar increase in geriatric trauma patients, and injury has now become the seventh leading cause of death in this age group. US Trauma centers are seeing the effect of this population shift, and there is growing awareness and concern for the poorer outcomes seen in the elderly compared to younger trauma patients, despite similar injury severity.
HISTORY of the Committee
In Dr. Robert Mackersie’s 2013 presidential address to the AAST, "For the care of the underserved", he identified the growing population of injured elderly patients as medically underserved. They have limited access to trauma centers, experience age-related treatment biases, and are deprived of many of the recent advances in modern trauma care. In an effort to address these inequalities, he convened the Ad-Hoc Geriatric Trauma Committee with the challenge to advise the AAST regarding the problems, issues, and needs of the geriatric patient.
Under the leadership of Dr. Steven Shackford, the committee responded to the charge by first surveying the AAST membership to better understand the current conditions of care of geriatric patients, as well as obtain a better understanding of the challenges to providing care to the elderly and begin to identify potential solutions. The committee then created a summary of the survey results as well as a literature summary of current problems in geriatric care, entitled "Injury in the aged: Geriatric trauma care at the crossroads" which was published in 2015 [See link in Resources]. The strong response of interest by the membership and the visionary leadership of Dr. Shackford led to the Ad-Hoc committee being transitioned to a Standing Committee by Presidents Cioffi and Scalea at the Annual meeting in September 2014.
The mission of the Geriatric Trauma Committee is to advance the care of elderly patients with acute surgical illness and injury through research, education and advocacy.
To accomplish this Mission, the Committee has the following specific aims:
- Work collaboratively with all professional societies and organizations interested in the well-being and care of the elderly.
- In collaboration with these organizations and professional societies:
- Develop a research agenda that supports the Mission.
- Educate providers about the physiologic and anatomic changes that affect the well-being of the elderly, specifically as they relate to injury incidence and recovery.
- Educate the public about the most common causes of injury and acute surgical illness in the elderly.
- Develop evidence-based guidelines for common injuries and acute surgical illnesses that affect the well-being of the elderly and that promote maximal functional recovery of the elderly.
- Promote injury prevention measures specific to the elderly.
- Deborah Stein (2016 - 2020)
- Jody DiGiacomo (2015 - 2020)
- A. Tyler Putnam (2016 - 2019)
- Abhijit Pathak (2016 - 2019)
- Alexander Axelrad (2017 - 2020)
- Anne Mosenthal (2015 - 2018)
- Aurelio Rodriguez (2017 - 2020)
- Bellal Joseph (2017 - 2020)
- Carrie Sims (2017 - 2020)
- David Lindsey (2016 - 2019)
- David Livingston (2017 - 2020)
- Jay Yelon (2016 - 2019)
- Jennifer Hubbard (2017 - 2020)
- John Owings (2015 - 2018)
- Kenji Inaba (2016 - 2019)
- Matthew Carrick (2017 - 2020)
- Orlando Kirton (2016 - 2019)
- Patrick Bosarge (2016 - 2019)
- Rosemary Kozar (2017 - 2020)
- Sasha Adams (2017 - 2020)
- Scott Armen (2017 - 2020)
- Soumitra Eachempati (2015 - 2018)
- Stanley Kurek, Jr. (2016 - 2019)
- Toan Huynh (2017 - 2020)
- Zara Cooper (2017 - 2020)
MIT Representative, ex-officio
- Todd Costantini (2017 - 2020)
- Robert Barraco (2017 - 2018)