Three MedStar Hospitals Achieve ‘Exemplar’ Status for Care for Older Adults

COLUMBIA, Md. (March 30, 2015)—MedStar Health was recently notified that three of its hospitals in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region, have achieved the highest level of recognition in the care of patients 65 and older. “Exemplar” status was bestowed by the national nursing program NICHE (Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders) upon MedStar Good Samaritan Hospital, Baltimore; MedStar Montgomery Medical Center, Olney, Md.; and MedStar Washington Hospital Center, Washington, D.C. The hospitals’ nursing leaders and staffs have demonstrated ongoing, high-level dedication to geriatric care and pre-eminence in the implementation and quality of system-wide interventions and initiatives that demonstrate organizational commitment to the care of older adults.

All 10 MedStar hospitals are NICHE-designated. The "Exemplar" status—the highest of four possible program levels—was assigned following a rigorous program evaluation of the current state and future goals of the NICHE program at the three hospitals.

NICHE conducts an evaluation of the current practice and goals of each site’s nursing program. Among the qualifications that NICHE considers are:

  • Adhering to the NICHE Geriatric Resource Nurse (GRN) model and evidence-based protocols on all applicable units, including specialty units
  • Following systemic aging-sensitive practices
  • Including input of patient, families and community-based providers in planning and implementation of NICHE initiatives
  • Assuming regional and national leadership roles

“The NICHE designation and the "Exemplar" status signal our resolve to provide patient-centered care for older adults,” says Maureen P. McCausland, DNSc, MedStar’s chief nursing officer. “Through our participation in the NICHE program we are able to offer evidence-based, interdisciplinary approaches that promote better outcomes, positive experiences, and improved care for the older adults in our care. This leads to greater satisfaction rates for our patients, their families and our staff.”

“MedStar’s evaluation demonstrated a tremendous ability to meet the needs of the older adult patient,” says Barbara Bricoli, MPA, NICHE executive director. “The hospitals’ high intensity level in marshalling geriatric nursing resources and support to enhance care mark MedStar as a leader in the field.”

About MedStar Health

MedStar Health is a not-for-profit health system dedicated to caring for people in Maryland and the Washington, D.C., region, while advancing the practice of medicine through education, innovation and research. MedStar’s 30,000 associates, 6,000 affiliated physicians, 10 hospitals, ambulatory care and urgent care centers, and the MedStar Health Research Institute are recognized regionally and nationally for excellence in medical care. As the medical education and clinical partner of Georgetown University, MedStar trains more than 1,100 medical residents annually. MedStar Health’s patient-first philosophy combines care, compassion and clinical excellence with an emphasis on customer service. For more information, visit

NICHE (Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elders) is an international program designed to help improve the care of older adults. The vision of NICHE is for all patients 65-and-over to be given sensitive and exemplary care. The mission of NICHE is to provide principles and tools to stimulate a change in the culture of healthcare facilities to achieve patient-centered care for older adults. NICHE, based at NYU College of Nursing, has over 620 hospitals and healthcare organizations from the U.S., Canada, Bermuda and Singapore in the network. For more information visit

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