Programs and Services for Elders

Boston Geriatric Education Model Consortium (GEM)

The Boston GEM Consortium project works with the Boston University School of Social Work to provide an innovative master’s-level social work training program. Focused on preparing social work practitioners, the GEM program meets the unique needs of the aging population by serving older clients and their families in the Boston neighborhoods of Roxbury, Dorchester, and the South End. The Boston GEM Consortium is funded by The John A. Hartford Foundation as part of the Practicum Partnership Program, managed by the New York Academy of Medicine. Additional support for the program is provided by The Atlantic Philanthropies. Underlying the Boston GEM Consortium project is the belief that MSW students trained in this model will develop a sophisticated understanding of the needs of older clients and their families, the services available to meet those needs, and the complexities of providing client-centered care via interacting multiple health and service systems. Visit our current website at

Information: 617-353-7009

Boston University Geriatric Services

Sponsored jointly by the School of Medicine and the Boston Medical Center, this program is the oldest continuously operating home-medical service in the United States. Boston University Geriatric Services provides an array of health services for Boston’s elderly, including medical care for patients in their own homes. The program makes approximately 5,000 home visits to 800 elders each year, thus enabling many patients who would otherwise require placement in nursing homes to remain independent. No patient is ever denied service for lack of ability to pay. Since 1875, physicians and medical students have been delivering health care to patients in their homes, where they feel most comfortable. Visit our current website at

Information: 617-638-6100

Elders Living at Home Program (ELAHP)

This Boston Medical Center program, established in 1986, serves low-to-moderate-income elders, age 60 or older, who are homeless or face the loss of their apartments, or who live in a life-threatening situation. ELAHP provides clients with temporary shelter leased from the Boston Housing Authority (BHA) while permanent housing is located. Over the years, ELAHP’s temporary housing has expanded to its current capacity of 28 units at four different sites, and has served as a model for collaborations between the BHA and other providers of services to the homeless. This program also provides or arranges for social services, health services, and legal counsel. ELAHP also coordinates nursing and social-work staffing at the Cardinal Medeiros Center, a nutrition site in Boston that serves some 150 homeless people daily. Visit our current website at

Information: 617-638-6148

Evergreen Program

Boston University sponsors this year-round program that, for a nominal fee, provides persons age 58 and over with courses and lectures covering politics, foreign languages, literature, music, and physical activities. In addition, through the Evergreen program, for an $80 fee, senior citizens may audit any regular University course, whenever space is available and with the instructor’s consent. More than 1,400 older persons attend the Evergreen lecture series and audit classes each year. Visit our current website at

Information: 617-353-9852

Geriatric Assessment Center

This consultation program provides comprehensive interdisciplinary team assessments of individuals age 65 or older. The Center, formed in 1986, is dedicated to identifying problems that reduce the independence of older people and to making practical recommendations to enable individuals to function to their fullest capacity. Visit our current website at

Information: 617-414-4639

Institute for Geriatric Social Work

Established in 2002 with a five-year grant from The Atlantic Philanthropies, the Institute for Geriatric Social Work (IGSW) has become a leader in the effort to build a stronger social work workforce for an aging society. With 36,000 IGSW-trained practitioners currently working in the field and IGSW training now available in all 50 states and overseas, the mission of IGSW is to strengthen the quality of the geriatric workforce through educational innovation, assessment, and policy-relevant research. Located at the Boston University School of Social Work, one of the nation’s preeminent social work programs, IGSW brings together expertise in instructional technology, educational design, testing, and evaluation to improve the preparedness and quality of practice of social workers and other social service practitioners who work with older adults and their families. Visit our current website at

Information: 617-358-2626,

Vaccines and Screenings

Through the Boston Medical Center, free vaccinations and health screenings are provided to the community. These include annual influenza vaccinations as well as screenings for skin cancer, prostate cancer, glaucoma, and osteoporosis.

Information: 617-638-8922