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Geriatric Assessment Unit

What is The GAU? 

The GAU is an inpatient unit at Credit Valley Hospital. The GAU provides specialized, multidisciplinary assessments of geriatric patients to optimize their medical and functional status. On average, the length of stay on the GAU is between 2 to 6 weeks. With your physician’s approval, you are welcome to have day or weekend passes from the unit.
While you are on the GAU a multi-disciplinary team will:

  • Ensure a thorough geriatric assessment
  • Prepare a plan of care
  • Develop a personalized discharge plan

Who is appropriate for the GAU ?

1. The patient should have one or more of the following conditions:
  • multiple and complex medical and psychosocial problems
  • recent unexplained decline in health and/or functional abilities
  • threatened loss of the capacity for independent living
  • specific problems: cognitive decline, behavioural problems, falls, polypharmacy, and/or elder abuse
2. The patient is a current Credit Valley Hospital inpatient OR living within the Credit Valley Hospital catchment area.
3. The patient must be sufficiently well clinically to benefit from a multidisciplinary program.
4. Exclusion Criteria: disabling diseases which are not amenable to therapy from the multidisciplinary team and are impairing the patient’s ability to function and participate in treatment  (e.g. severe dementia).

The Multidisciplinary Team

  • Your Primary Nurse will manage your nursing care plan, provide your direct nursing care and participate in the multidisciplinary plan of care.
  • Your Physician will be responsible for your medical care.
  • In addition, depending upon your individual needs, a combination of the following health professionals may be involved in your care:
  • Occupational Therapist: may assess your ability to function in activities of daily living (such as dressing, bathing, grooming and meal preparation) and help you become more independent. The therapist may recommend assistive devices for independence and safety.
  • Pharmacist: may monitor drug therapy and provide drug information to you and/or your family.
  • Physiotherapist: may assess your physical movement and make recommendations to help you move about safely, comfortably and as independently as possible.
  • Psychologist: may assess your cognitive functioning (including your memory and problem solving) and make recommendations to optimize your safety and overall functioning. Issues related to mood may also be addressed.
  • Recreationist: may assess your leisure involvement and leisure interests, help you maintain or develop leisure skills and provide information on recreation resources.
  • Registered Dietitian: may assess nutritional issues and help you to eat a safe and healthy diet. Individualized and family counseling may also be provided.
  • Social Worker: may assist in planning your discharge from hospital and provide information on community resources. Individualized and family counseling may also be provided.
  • Speech Language Pathologist: may evaluate and treat swallowing disorders to ensure maximal safety for swallowing. The therapist may evaluate and treat communication disorders and help you and your caregivers to develop an appropriate method of communicating.
  • CCAC Services: may be involved in coordinating services to assist you after discharge such as occupational therapy, physiotherapy, speech therapy, nursing or personal support.

While on the Geriatric Assessment Unit

Information regarding your assessments, progress and recommendations will be reviewed with you. You and your family will be active participants in the process.
You will be encouraged to do as much for yourself as you are able. You will be expected to participate daily in your scheduled therapies
Referral Process
Your family physician can refer you for an admission to the unit by faxing a referral to 905-813-4229