New Division of Geriatrics to Be Led by Caroline S. Blaum, MD

Dr. Caroline S. Blaum, new director of the Division of Geriatrics, NYU Department of Medicine.
Caroline S. Blaum, MD, will direct the new Division of Geriatrics.

On June 15th the NYU Department of Medicine announced it is expanding the Section of Geriatrics to the new Division of Geriatrics in the Department of Medicine.  Dr. Caroline S. Blaum, a nationally recognized leader in the field of geriatric medicine will direct the division. The Geriatrics is currently a section within the Division of General Internal Medicine.

Dr. Blaum will be the Diane and Arthur Belfer Professor of Geriatric Medicine and Director of the Division of Geriatrics.  After a comprehensive national search, Blaum emerged as the leading candidate. Currently, she is Professor of Internal Medicine, Geriatric and Palliative Medicine at the University of Michigan, a Research Professor in the UM’s Institute of Gerontology, and a Research Scientist at the Ann Arbor VA Geriatrics Research, Education and Clinical Center.  

Dr. Blaum has had a distinguished career advancing Geriatrics and contributing to its growth as an academic discipline. She has built an active research program in epidemiology, translational and interventional research supported by the NIA, AHRQ, and the VARR&D Merit Award Program.  Her research interests concern models of care, complex patients, frailty, and diabetes in older adults, and she has nearly 70 peer reviewed papers and chapters. She currently is a member of the NIH Aging Systems and Geriatrics Study Section.

Currently, Dr. Blaum serves as the Assistant Dean for Clinical Affairs at the at the University of Michigan Medical School. She is also an Associate Medical Director of the University of Michigan’s Faculty Group Practice and directs the UM Health System’s Population Health Program.  Her activities in population health consist of design and evaluation of care delivery models including coordinating care across the care continuum, transitions of care, delivery system redesign, and models of care for patients with multiple chronic conditions.  She currently leads the University of Michigan’s activities related to care delivery innovations such as its Pioneer Accountable Care Organization (ACO), Patient Centered Medical Home, and various other initiatives. From 2005-2010 she led the University of Michigan’s efforts in the Medicare Physician Group Practice Demonstration, one of the only projects of its kind that has demonstrated a reduction in Medicare growth along with improved quality of clinical care for Medicare beneficiaries and is a key model for current ACO policy. 

Dr. Blaum is active in national policy work related to delivery system redesign and quality of care for older adults and patients with multiple chronic conditions.  She is the Chair of the American Geriatrics Society’s (AGS) Quality Performance and Measurement Committee. She is also AGS’s representative to the AMA-Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement (AMA-PCPI) and sits on its Executive Committee.  She co-chaired the AMA-PCPI Work Group for the Geriatrics Physician Performance Measurement Set. She served on the National Quality Forum (NQF) Hospital Outcomes Steering Committee, and recently co-chaired the NQF Steering Committee to Develop a Framework for Quality Measurement for Patients with Multiple Chronic Conditions.

Dr. Blaum has always maintained an active geriatrics practice.  She sees patients in the ambulatory, acute and sub-acute settings, and has been active in teaching Internal Medicine and Geriatrics to medical students, house officers and geriatrics fellows. She received her Undergraduate, Medical and Public Health Degrees at the University of Michigan. She completed her Internal Medicine Residency at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York City and the Detroit Medical Center, and her Fellowship in Geriatrics at the University of Michigan. 

NYU Division of Geriatrics

The expansion of the Division of Geriatrics from the Section of Geriatrics in the Division of General Internal Medicine is an important development for the Department of Medicine. 

The NYU Section of Geriatrics treats an unusually diverse patient population. It has also enjoyed strong institutional support with particular interest in health aging. 

In the early 1970s, two programs addressing the needs of disadvantaged elderly patients were launched at NYU: an outreach program for elderly patients living in single-room-occupancy hotels, and a psychiatry outreach program for de-institutionalized elderly patients with dementia.

These two programs were brought together in the Bellevue Hospital Geriatric Clinic in 1979 within the Department of Medicine. Over the next twenty years, an in-patient unit at Bellevue was added, followed by a geriatrics clinic and a home care program at the Manhattan VA Hospital. A geriatrics clinic and a falls program were instituted at the Hospital for Joint Diseases as was a consult team at Tisch University Hospital (now the NYU Langone Medical Center).

Geriatric Fellowship Program—one of the first ten such programs in the United States—was started in 1981.