Dental Students and Older Adults Connect in Innovative Program
Through an innovative program at the University of Colorado (CU) Anschutz Medical Campus, students from the Schools of Dental Medicine, Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Nursing, and Medicine are paired with older adults in the community to combat the social isolation that has been prevalent during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Connecting Older Adults and Students Through Interprofessional Telecare (COAST-IT) program connects students with older adults—many with chronic health issues—for weekly or biweekly phone calls for one semester. COAST-IT has been highly successful, with students developing skills integral to effective patient care, such as listening and relationship building, while older adults enjoy the social interaction. Many of the student-older adult pairs have continued their relationships beyond the prescribed time. CU plans on offering the program indefinitely. Click here to read more.