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“In Europe and around the world, people are living longer than ever before. This is one of the greatest achievements of the past century, but it also brings challenges for European societies and the EU as a whole.”

The mission of the Discipline of Medical Gerontology in Trinity College Dublin is to help face the current and future challenges of ageing by supporting education and research around successful ageing, geriatrics, gerontology, and preventative care of the older person, both at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

Our overarching objectives are:

  • to enhance the health and care of the older person in both home and care settings, as well as promote research to determine innovative responses to the ageing process.
  • maximise and promote healthy ageing, which is the process of developing and maintaining the functional ability that enables wellbeing in older age, “adding life to years” and not simply “years to life”.

The Discipline enjoys a strong and highly reputable clinical teaching and research agenda which takes place in both St. James's Hospital (MedEL Directorate) and Tallaght University Hospital (Age Related Healthcare).

In St James’s Hospital, robust links exist with the Mercer’s Institute for Research on Ageing (MIRA) and The Mercer's Institute for Successful Ageing (MISA). In Tallaght University Hospital, robust links exist with Aois agus Eolas: Centre for Ageing, Neurosciences and the Humanities. The clinical training and research programmes offered in St James’s Hospital and Tallaght University Hospital are wide-ranging and complementary, and include:

  • Brain health, stroke, cognitive impairment, delirium and dementia
  • Falls and syncope
  • Multimorbidity, frailty and resilience
  • Nutrition
  • Osteoporosis and bone health
  • Continence
  • Population Health in Ageing
  • Health services research and quality improvement
  • Technology Research for Independent Living
  • Asset mapping and social prescribing
  • Creative Life and the Humanities
  • Elder abuse and gerontological advocacy

The Discipline is central to Trinity’s Ageing Research Theme and Trinity EngAGE: Ireland's global Centre for excellence in Ageing research. The Discipline is closely linked with The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA), the Global Brain Health Institute, the Dementia Services Information and Development Centre and Trinity College Institute of Neuroscience. Strong partnerships with Old Age Psychiatry as well as many other multi-disciplinary departments in both clinical and academia settings also exist. The Discipline is highly engaged nationally and internationally. For example, findings from TILDA are directly informing and influencing Irish policy. We are highly engaged with the Irish Gerontological Society and the National Clinical Programme for OIder People. Internationally, the Discipline is well represented at SAPEA (Science Advice for Policy by European Academies), which is an integral part of the European Commission’s Scientific Advice Mechanism on Transforming the Future of Ageing. Other close international collaborations include the European Geriatric Medicine Society and the International Association for Geriatrics and Gerontology, amongst others.

In addition to the undergraduate and postgraduate education and research, the Discipline has gained a strong reputation as an advocate for the understanding of ageing, both clinical and societal, and it's issues and implications. There is also a strong awareness of the need to communicate research findings as a means of improving public awareness, practice and policy around ageing and the older person.

At the Discipline of Medical Gerontology we are very proud of our culture of innovation and collaboration. We believe in strong partnerships that can deliver new ways of thinking to provide leadership for health strategies and will continue to expand our relationships with important players from all sectors of society to enhance this focus.