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Sue Pondrom (619)
Psychiatrist Dilip Jeste Appointed To
Levi Memorial Chair in Aging
Dilip V. Jeste,
M.D., UCSD professor of psychiatry and neurosciences, has been appointed
to the endowed Estelle and Edgar Levi Memorial Chair in Aging at UCSD.
Jeste is a
specialist in geriatric psychiatry, with particular research focus on
schizophrenia in late life and its treatment. He is chief, UCSD
Division of Geriatric Psychiatry, which includes the Senior Behavioral
Health Program (with an inpatient unit as well as an outpatient clinic) at
UCSD Medical Center. He is also director, UCSD’s National
Institute of Mental Health-funded Specialized Mental Health Intervention
Research Center on Late-Life Psychosis.
The author of
numerous published research studies and articles, Jeste recently said that
the good news regarding mental illness in people over age 75 is that it
can be treated successfully with better and safer drug and psychosocial
treatments. However, Jeste added that America is facing a crisis in
geriatric mental health.
are 35 million people age 65 and older in the U.S.,” he said. “In 30
years, this number will double to 70 million. Today, we
don’t have enough geriatric psychiatry treatment professionals –
psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, nurses – to adequately
meet our needs. With numbers more than doubling, we must begin an
aggressive education and training program in order to take care of the
mental health problems of older people.”
At UCSD, Jeste
started the Geriatric Psychiatric Program 15 years ago to treat patients,
train undergraduates and graduate students such as M.D.s, Ph.D.s and
Pharm.D.s, and conduct research. On a national level, Jeste conducts
the Summer Research Institute in Geriatric Psychiatry, which is funded by
the National Institute of Mental Health.
Earlier this year,
Jeste was named editor of the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry and
last year he established a new organization for academicians in geriatric
mental health called the International College of Geriatric
1988, the Levi chair was held by Daniel Steinberg, M.D., Ph.D., professor
of medicine, until his retirement in 2000.