Geriatric Services - San Francisco VA Health Care System
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San Francisco VA Health Care System


Geriatric Services

Community Living Center

The Community Living Center (CLC) is an integral part of the Geriatrics and Extended Care Service and is administered by a team including a medical director, full time physicians and an associate chief nurse. The CLC provides a variety of health care programs for Veterans: long-term care, short-term rehabilitation therapy, respite care, and palliative care.
For more information about the CLC call (415) 221-4810, ext 2-4246. 

Respite Care

A Respite Care program offers family caregivers of eligible Veterans a period of relief from the demands of daily care for their elderly, disabled or chronically ill family member. The program is staffed by a social worker, a geriatrician, and by professionals from the CLC. Veterans who are medically stable and free from disruptive behavior usually stay on respite care for 11 days at a time, not to exceed four weeks in any calendar year. Respite patients may participate in CLC programs. Up to four patients may receive respite care at any given time. We have both on-site respite in the CLC and in-home respite for patients who prefer that option. For further information about respite care call (415) 221-4810, ext 2-4254.

Rehabilitation Care

Eligible Veterans who require short-term rehabilitative care for recovery from acute events (surgery, stroke, acute illness) may receive this therapy at the CLC. The program is staffed by Geriatricians, physical and occupational therapists, and other health care professionals at the CLC. For information about this program call (415) 221-4810, ext 2-3224.

Hospice and Palliative Care

Palliative Care aims to improve the quality of life and reduce suffering for patients and their families facing a life-threatening illness. The Palliative Care team of doctors, nurses, chaplains, psychologists, pharmacists and social workers provide care in conjunction with all other appropriate forms of medical treatment. Palliative care can be consulted in the hospital, nursing home, or in clinic visits for veterans living at home.  All Veterans have a right to Palliative Care.

Hospice is a mode of Palliative Care for Veterans with a life expectancy of less than six months and treatment goals focused on comfort rather than cure. The Hospice and Palliative Care service provides hospice care for Veterans in the CLC, and collaborates with community hospice services. The emphasis of care is to foster the best possible quality of life through relief of suffering, control of symptoms, and preservation of functional capacity, while remaining sensitive to the Veteran’s personal, cultural and religious values, beliefs and practices. For information about this program call (415) 221-4810, ext 2-4979.

Geriatric Medicine Clinic

The Geriatric Medicine Clinic offers both primary care and one-time consultations for special problems of older patients. The clinics are staffed by Geriatricians, with input from social workers, pharmacists, or other professionals as needed. To contact the clinic, call (415) 750-2170. The Telephone Link Care (advice nurse) for the clinic is (415) 752-1212 or (800) 733-0502.

Home Based Primary Care

Home Based Primary Care (HBPC) provides at-home medical, nursing, social services, pharmacy, nutritional, psychological, and rehabilitative therapy for eligible Veterans whose disabilities prevent them from attending medical clinics for primary care. This program, which consists of three sites (San Francisco, Santa Rosa/Ukiah, and Eureka) is staffed by a medical director, program director, part-time physician consultant, nurse practitioners, registered nurse, dietitian, social workers, psychologist, psychiatrist, and a pharmacist. HBPC keeps disabled Veterans at home who otherwise might be institutionalized, thus improving quality of life for the patients. To contact the SF HBHC, call (415) 221-4810, ext 2-2045, or the Santa Rosa/Ukiah and Eureka HBPC, at (707) 569-2369.

Contract Nursing Home Care

Eligible service-connected Veterans who require nursing home care may be placed - at VA expense - in community contract nursing homes (CNH). The program is administered by a full-time social worker and is monitored by the social work coordinator, nurses, and other extended care staff. Eligible Veterans usually are placed for 1 - 2 months, and on occasion for longer periods of time. For more information about this program, call (415) 221-4810, ext. 2-4590.

Geriatric Teaching Program

SFVAMC is a major teaching and research center for the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine. Staff members of this medical center, including members of the Geriatric Service, hold faculty appointments at the School of Medicine. As an integral part of the University of California, Department of Medicine, the geriatric program offers teaching to medical students, nurses in training, and house officers. Elective programs in the geriatric medical clinic, the CLC and HBPC may be taken by interested students, medical residents, and other health profession trainees. For information about geriatric teaching programs at SFVAMC call (415) 221 4810, ext. 2-3983.

Geriatric Research

SFVAMC is one of the leading research centers in American medicine, and research in geriatrics and gerontology has been in the forefront of medical center research for decades. Currently, there are more than a dozen grant-supported, age-related investigative programs at this medical center, including research on: osteoporosis in older women; effect of mammography on early cancer detection; MRI studies of dementia; treatment of depression; treatment of delirium; calcium balance in older men; cell biology of aging; and basic cardiology.