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Programs & Services


UTMB was awarded a $4.97 million dollar grant (R24HS022134) in 2013 from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to conduct patient-centered outcomes research. AHRQ's mission is to produce evidence to make health care safer, higher quality, more accessible, equitable, and affordable, and to work with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and other partners to make sure that the evidence is understood and used. Dispersed over a five-year period, this federal grant is being used to establish the infrastructure for a center on Patient-Centered Outcomes Research in the Elderly at UTMB.
The Claude Pepper Older Americans Independence Center honors the memory of Claude Denson Pepper, a Florida congressman and career-long advocate for the rights of older adults. A vigorous man throughout his life, he rejected the idea that physical and mental decline were an inevitable part of normal aging.
The mission of the WHO/PAHO Collaborating Center is to foster research to improve the health of older populations in Latin America and the Caribbean. This is possible by establishing collaborations with institutions in Latin America. The work of the Center is also committed to training scholars with a cross-cultural, multidisciplinary perspective.
The ETGEC-C, in partnership with the Texas Area Health Education Centers (AHEC), provides geriatric-oriented medical education and clinical training for health professionals and students in health professions within a 72 county area of East Texas. This area is more than 80% rural and above the national and state average in percent elderly (65+ years of age), particularly older minorities. Professional disciplines targeted by the ETGEC-C include medicine, nursing, social work and allied health professions (physician assistants, physical therapy, and occupational therapy).

Funded by the Isla Carroll Friendship Trust, the Center for Spirituality of Aging intends to nurture, empower and dignify the spiritual integrity of seniors by providing opportunities to serve others, build community and learn about healthy aging. The goal is prevent isolation, loneliness, illness and untimely death among elders in Galveston County. Studies indicate that with holistic education, motivation and encouragement elders live longer, happier and healthier lives.

Helen Appelberg, D.Min.
Director of Spirituality of Aging Center
Phone: (409) 266-9682
FAX: (409) 772-8931
E-mail: hwappelb@utmb.edu


Research Programs

In November 2007, Texas voters approved a constitutional amendment to establish the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) to fund grants for cancer research and prevention. In the first competition for multi-investigator proposals, CPRIT funded the $4.8 million (three years) Comparative Effectiveness Research on Cancer in Texas (CERCIT).
The Sealy Fellows Program recognizes faculty from all departments and schools within UTMB based on their contributions in the field of aging. The primary criteria for program qualification are that these activities be ongoing, extensive and scholarly. The more than 70 SCoA Fellows and Senior Fellows represent a wide range of disciplines and departments.
The Mexican Health and Aging Study (MHAS) started as a prospective panel study of health and aging in Mexico. MHAS was supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health/ National Institute on Aging (R01AG018016, BJ Soldo, PI).


Research Training Opportunities

The MSTAR program offers an 8-12 week intensive experience in aging research for first-year medical students. The goals are to include trainees from diverse backgrounds, offer individualized, structured training that includes a mentor, a research project, didactics and supplementary experiences and promotes a sense of identity and membership within the field of aging research among other things.
Funded by the National Institute on Aging, this program provides training for pre- and postdoctoral researchers interested in studying the health of older minorities, particularly older Hispanics.
The Sealy Center on Aging has pre- and post-doctoral fellowship positions for training in research focused on the comparative effectiveness of health care provided to older adults, with an emphasis on cancer related outcomes.

Annual Events

This campus-wide event co-sponsored by the center and Office of the Vice President for Research promotes interaction and collaboration among faculty and students by allowing them an opportunity to present their current research in a poster forum format. Over the past several years, more than 70 researchers and more than 20 students have presented posters. The Forum has attracted an annual attendance of 200 persons from across the campus.

This lecture series features six nationally recognized gerontology research educators, basic scientists, clinicians and social scientists. Each speaker presents a lecture on an important aspect of aging research and consults with students, faculty and staff on research topics, grant applications and articles being written for publication.


Post-doctoral and Student Advancement

The Sealy Center on Aging sponsors pre-doctoral and postdoctoral fellowships annually. These fellowships were established specifically to introduce new investigators to the field of Aging. The Fellowship Program operates in conjunction with federally sponsored training grants that also support pre and post-doctoral fellowships in aging research.

The Execellence in Aging Research Awards Program

Student awards offered by the Sealy Center on Aging recognize outstanding aging research achievements to encourage further work in aging studies.

For more information, contact us.

Faculty Collaboration

The Sealy Fellows Program recognizes faculty from all departments and schools within UTMB based on their contributions in the field of aging. The primary criteria for program qualification are that these activities be ongoing, extensive and scholarly. The more than 70 SCoA Fellows and Senior Fellows represent a wide range of disciplines and departments.
The Interdiciplinary Faculty Recruitment Program

The center assists UTMB departments in recruiting quality faculty who have a strong focus or interest in aging research.

For more information, contact us.

Other Services

Manuscript Office

The SCoA Manuscript Office assists with projects developed within the Center. It provides assistance in development, planning, writing and editing of journal articles, as well as in post-submission issues such as responding to reviewers' comments. Manuscript Office staff also help produce large, multi-investigator grants, and help with development and writing of individual proposals.

For more information, contact:
Sarah Toombs-Smith, PhD
e-mail: stoombs@utmb.edu

The registry includes people age 55 and older who are interested in volunteering for research studies on the health and well-being of seniors.

For more information, contact:
Roxana Hirst, MS
409-772-8931 FAX
email: rmhirst@utmb.edu

Research Datasets

The center has these valuable research datasets available:

Healthy City Assessment Project - Texas City (HCAP-TC)

Hispanic Established Populations for Epidemiologic Studies of the Elderly (Hispanic EPESE)

Health of the Public needs assessment survey of Galveston County residents, 75 years of age or older.

Grace Bucksch Gnitzinger Library

This extensive resource and reference center includes scholarly publications and works associated with aging or created by older artists.

The Sealy Center on Aging Learning Center is a free, accessible resource to promote healthy lifestyles, educate, and support seniors in our community as well as seniors visiting UTMB. This library is housed in the UTMB Primary Care Pavilion, conveniently located on Harborside Drive in Galveston, with ample free parking for the library's visitors.

For more information, contact:
Ritchie Adoue
Phone: 409-266-9660
e-mail: raadoue@utmb.edu

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