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The Institute for Person-Centered Care -- the first of its kind in the United States -- is designed to provide better delivery of services to frail and vulnerable people, particularly the elderly, and support advocacy and public awareness of their needs, through a program of cross-disciplinary research, education and practice development. This new interdisciplinary institute will bring together researchers, educators, health care providers and community-based programs to develop and disseminate evidence-based care of the frail and aging citizens in our society.

The IPCC grew from collaborations between UB faculty members and the Western New York Alliance for Person-Centered Care, a grassroots collaborative of skilled-nursing and assisted-living facilities dedicated to fostering a new approach to caring for residents in long-term communal living environments. Additional collaborations also exist between local researchers and researchers in the United Kingdom and Australia.

Person-centered care is an approach to care that began in nursing homes where residents, particularly those with dementia, were found to be disengaged with life and often responding to care with fear or aggression.

Aimed at alleviating the boredom, loneliness and helplessness these people often feel, person-centered care, at its most fundamental, is about ensuring dignity, personhood and purpose for vulnerable and frail individuals no matter where they live. In addition to delivering high-quality physical care, it also provides the emotional and psychological needs of the person who is unable to satisfy these needs independently.

The IPCC research program will work to develop evidence-based strategies of care based on and supported by scholarly research in the field. The institute will focus on education at the undergraduate and graduate levels, with the goal of eventually building person-centered care interdisciplinary programs of study in aging and gerontology.

It also will provide training and specialist topics for staff in elder-care facilities, hospitals, community-based groups providing health-care services, and for the public.

In addition, the IPCC will provide leadership training and practice development, as well as encouraging better delivery of services to frail and vulnerable people, and support for advocacy and public awareness efforts.

 


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