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Geriatric Mental Health Care

Lessons From a Pandemic

Edited by Robert P. Roca, M.D., M.P.H., Micheline Dugué, M.D., and Maria Llorente, M.D., FAPA

  • 2022
  • 364 Pages
  • ISBN 978-1-61537-465-6
  • Item #37465

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The COVID-19 pandemic has had a disproportionate impact on older adults with mental illness, and Geriatric Mental Health Care was conceived in response. This book, with its detailed descriptions of clinical and social innovations to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on a vulnerable population, represents an ongoing effort to address rapidly evolving health care needs. Because the authors worked on this book during the pandemic, the practices they describe have been tested and refined in the real world.

Introductory vignettes that serve to illustrate each chapter's salient points, key takeaways that allow for quick reference, and multiple-choice questions that help reinforce learning are the hallmarks of Geriatric Mental Health Care. In addition to offering a historical perspective on the mental health effects of pandemics, the chapter authors delve into modern-day concerns that include inpatient geriatric psychiatry during a pandemic, telehealth models of care, health care staff concerns, and social determinants of health. The authors also explore the pandemic's effects on research and the economy, analyzing the impact of nonclinical factors on the broader clinical care effort.

Although important strides have been made in the delivery of mental health care to older adult patients, very real challenges remain more than a year and a half after the pandemic's emergence. Even as the world continues to grapple with the effects of the current pandemic, mental health professionals must prepare themselves to provide care under the trying conditions of what will likely be other pandemics in the future. These considerations make Geriatric Mental Health Care, and its purpose of sharing promising practices that other clinicians and systems can consider emulating, so urgent and necessary.


  • Chapter 1. Pandemics and Mental Health: Epidemiology and Public Health
  • Chapter 2. Historical Overview of Pandemics
  • Chapter 3. Emergency Psychiatric Care for Older Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Workflow, Common Presentations, and Overall Trends
  • Chapter 4. Inpatient Geriatric Psychiatry During a Global Pandemic
  • Chapter 5. COVID-19 in Long-Term Care Settings
  • Chapter 6. Dementia Care and the COVID-19 Pandemic
  • Chapter 7. Telehealth Models of Care for Geriatric Behavioral Health During a Pandemic
  • Chapter 8. Managing Health Care Staff Concerns During Pandemics: Acute Phase and Recovery Phase
  • Chapter 9. Geriatric Psychiatry Among Older Adults from Diverse Backgrounds in the Age of COVID-19
  • Chapter 10. Social Determinants of COVID-19 Morbidity and Mortality
  • Chapter 11. Tales from the Pandemic: The Effect of COVID-19 on Research
  • Chapter 12. Social Isolation and Loneliness in Older Adults during the COVID-19 Pandemic
  • Chapter13. The COVID Economy: Mental Health Impact on Older Adults
  • Chapter 14. Ethical Dilemmas and Resource Scarcities during Pandemics
  • Chapter 15. Neuropsychiatric Manifestations of COVID-19
  • Chapter 16. Psychopharmacological Challenges of Treating Older Adults with COVID-19
  • Chapter 17. Challenging Times: Consultation-Liaison (CL) Psychiatry in the Era of COVID-19


    Marc Agronin, M.D., DFAPA, DFAAGP
    Iqbal Ike Ahmed, M.D., FRCPsych (UK)
    Alan Akira, M.D.
    Janet Baek, M.D.
    Magdalena Bednarczyk, M.D.
    Laura Bevilacqua, M.D., Ph.D.
    O. Joseph Bienvenu, M.D., Ph.D.
    Shehan Chin, LMSW
    Daniel C. Dahl, M.D.
    Jonathan M. DePierro, Ph.D.
    Ebony Dix, M.D.
    Micheline Dugue, M.D.
    Matthew L. Edwards, M.D.
    Shannon C. Ford, M.D.
    Carol S. Fullerton, Ph.D.
    Rebecca Grossman-Kahn, M.D.
    Rita Hargrave, M.D., FAPA
    Holly B. Herberman Mash, Ph.D.
    Paul B. Hill, M.D.
    Donald M. Hilty, M.D., M.B.A.
    Sharwat Jahan, M.D.
    Dwight Kemp, M.D., M.S.
    Raya E. Kheirbek, M.D., M.P.H.
    Eitan Z. Kimchi, M.D.
    Sarah E. LaFave, Ph.D., M.P.H., R.N.
    Susan W. Lehmann, M.D.
    Maria D. Llorente, M.D., FAPA
    Maria Loizos, Ph.D.
    Joshua C. Morganstein, M.D.
    Kanya Nesbeth, M.D.
    Judith Neugroschl, M.D.
    Linda Nix, M.D, M.P.H.
    Donna M. Norris, M.D.
    Yolonda R. Pickett, M.D.
    Marilyn Price, M.D.
    Samara E. Rainey, B.A.
    Badr Ratnakaran, M.B.B.S.
    Col. (Ret.) Elspeth Cameron Ritchie, M.D., M.P.H.
    Robert P. Roca, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A.
    Neha N. Sharma, M.D.
    Shilpa Srinavasan, M.D., DFAPA, DFAAGP
    Karla Steinberg, LMSW
    Sandra Swantek, M.D., FAPA
    Farah Tabaja, M.D.
    Emily Tan, B.A.
    Madeline B. Teisberg, D.O.
    Nhi-Ha Trinh, M.D., M.P.H.
    Mari Umpierre, Ph.D., LCSW
    Robert J. Ursano, M.D.
    Antoinette M. Valenti, M.D.
    Yee Xiong, M.D.

About the Authors

Robert P. Roca, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., is Vice Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland.

Micheline Dugue, M.D., is Attending Psychiatrist, Department of Mental Health, VA Pacific Islands Healthcare Systems in Maui, Hawaii.

Maria D. Llorente, M.D., FAPA, is Deputy Chief of Staff at Washington DC VA Medical Center, Department of Veterans Affairs and Professor of Psychiatry at George Washington School of Medicine in Washington, D.C.

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