We just had our 16th interdisciplinary, patient-centered, Geriatric Cardiology Conference here at NYU. It is heartening to see so many experts (geriatric and cardiology physicians, nurse practitioners, fellows, surgeons, palliative care specialists, and medical students) sitting in one room together. With today’s compartmentalization of medical fields, specialists do not often meet to discuss patients who are at the intersection of multiple disciplines. This conference is a clinical innovation that was created with the intention of addressing that problem for older adults with complex cardiovascular issues. Our diverse group meets once a month to discuss 1-2 active patients who have come to a clinical crossroads. All patients are presented in a standard format and the group of attendees comes to a consensus on each clinical question at hand. The referring physician receives a summary letter stating the final opinion of the group. Our ultimate hope is that this interdisciplinary conference will serve as a paradigm for similar programs nationwide.
By: Adam Skolnick, MD