President's Column: AAGP Highlights Include Annual Meeting and Journal

Published Monday, April 7, 2014 9:00 am
by Susan K. Schultz, MD, AAGP President
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AAGP President Susan K. Schultz, MD

On the heels of the terrific “Empower Aging” Annual Meeting, I’d like to thank the staff and membership for all the inspiring and thought-provoking sessions in Orlando. The range of topics nicely reflected the breadth of scientific and clinical expertise that makes our field such a unique specialty. It was wonderful to hear the enthusiastic comments among attendees who plan to join us in New Orleans!

The chance to get together at the Annual Meeting with our peers and recharge our enthusiasm for the field is the highlight of membership for most of us! I am hopeful that each of you will take to heart how important it is for the AAGP to reach out and engage more of our colleagues in our mission and our meeting. The theme of “Interprofessional Practice” for the 2015 Annual Meeting is the right theme at the right time. In fact, I invoked the theme just today when an Iowa colleague from our School of Social Work emailed me about working on educational webinars; I used the chance to invite her to New Orleans, pointing out that we provide continuing education credits for social work in addition to physician, nursing and psychology credits. I hope that over the next year, each of you will seize every opportunity to mention our theme and potential for CEUs to your colleagues across the allied health professions.

In addition to the Annual Meeting, the other terrific benefit to our members is the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. We have reaped the rewards of Dilip Jeste’s leadership enormously over the past 14 years, which has elevated the journal to a premier status and provided an exemplary outlet to publish our science. Dilip will finish his successful tenure at the end of 2015, and we are in the process of identifying our next Editor-in-Chief to take over this role. I’d like to thank William M. McDonald, MD, for taking on the leadership of the selection committee. Dr. McDonald brings a great depth of experience and thoughtful approach to this task; he is the J.B. Fuqua Chair for Late-Life Depression and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory, Chief of Psychiatry at Grady Memorial Hospital and the Vice-Chair for Education. The selection of the next editor is in great hands under his direction and I’d like to also recognize the search committee: Maria Llorente, MD; Meryl Butters, PhD; Stephen Bartels, MD; Paul Kirwin, MD; Allan Anderson, MD; Jeffrey Lyness, MD; Doug Kalunian, MD; Laura Dunn, MD; and Stephan Arndt, PhD. They will be thinking very carefully over the next several months how to maintain the tremendous leadership and growth of the journal.

Of course there are many other valued aspects of the association in addition to the Annual Meeting and the journal. We will take those up over the next year in the newsletter and together with our Board of Directors, I will seek your feedback as we think carefully about how to expand our reach into the field of senior care, and strengthen our organization. We will be asking the membership for ideas and guidance, always being mindful of the most important question of all: “What choices will benefit our patients the most?”