Donald W. Reynolds Foundation Awards Grant

November 14, 2008

The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation announced that its board of trustees has approved 10 grants, totaling almost $20 million, to strengthen physician’s geriatrics training across the United States.  President Steven L. Anderson made the announcement from the Foundation’s Las Vegas headquarters today.  The grants will support comprehensive projects in academic health centers to train medical students, residents and practicing physicians in geriatrics.

Fred W. Smith, chairman of the Foundation’s board of trustees, announced today, "The Reynolds Foundation has now committed almost $80 million under this initiative.  The Foundation’s goal is to improve the quality of health care for elderly people across America by preparing physicians to address their special needs.  The trustees and I are proud of the work that the Foundation’s grantees have conducted thus far and look forward to the accomplishments of this new group of exciting projects.

The awards announced today represent the fourth group of grants under the Foundation’s Aging and Quality of Life program.  The Foundation’s trustees awarded the first group of 10 grants in April 2001, totaling $19.1 million.  Second and third groups of 10 academic health centers were awarded grants totaling $19.8 million in July 2003 and $19.9 million in May 2006.

The Aging and Quality of Life program was conceived by the Foundation in response to a growing consensus that physicians lack adequate training to meet the increasing needs of the frail elderly patient.  Such patients typically suffer from multiple, interactive physical and psychosocial conditions — both acute and chronic — that compromise their capacity to function in the daily life and lessen their independence.  "Since this is our fourth group of grantees under this initiative, we weren’t sure new grantees could come up with fresh innovations to translate into improved care for frail elders throughout the United States.  But we found that the projects keep getting better," said Anderson.

Forty-eight academic health centers applied for grants in response to a call for proposals from the Foundation in November 2007.  With the assistance of a panel of geriatrics experts, 10 were chosen.  The institutions selected and grant amounts are as follows:

Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC – $2,000,000

University of Alabama, Birmingham, AL – $2,000,000

University of California, Irvine, CA – $1,999,994

University of Massachusetts, Worcester, MA – $1,983,066

University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey School of Osteopathic Medicine, Stratford, NJ – $1,998,421

University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, TX – $1,998,504

University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA – $1,939,517

University of Texas, Houston, Houston, TX – $2,000,000

University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX – $1,994,480

Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC – $1,994,741

 A broad range of training activities will be supported under the grants.  For example, at the University of North Texas, the medical school will develop a program focused heavily on establishing a geriatrics faculty development program for rural osteopathic faculty and developing geriatrics continuing  medical education programs for practicing physicians.

The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation is a national philanthropic organization founded in 1954 by the late media entrepreneur for whom it is names.  Headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, it is one of the largest private foundations in the United States.

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