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Rosemary Bakker, (left), with Arlene Sussillo, after a home assessment. Arlene is now getting in and out of bed independently using a bed handle rather than depending on a caregiver.
GEM is a unique research, interior design and gerontologic safety educational program created to address the growing environmental demands on the elderly, who, while undergoing the normal process of aging, struggle to maintain daily living skills in dwellings designed for young active families.

Gerontologic design is an underutilized but important tool in helping elders maximize function, safety and quality of life. Through our leadership, GEM will act as a catalyst to increase both the knowledge base of gerontological design and the number of healthy urban environments for Manhattan's aging residents. GEM not only offers a new cost-effective way to approach housing in the later years but does so in a way that encourages community development while increasing consumer choice.

By building bridges between education, technology and direct practice, GEM will:

  1. Increase the knowledge of service providers on how age-appropriate design and furnishings can extend independent living for older adults.
  2. Increase the ability of community agencies to access free or low cost government, agency and corporate sponsored home repair programs and furnishings.
  3. Increase the number of elders who make their dwellings safer and easier to use; and
  4. Extend independent living for older adults.

GEM (Gerontologic Environmental Modifications) gratefully acknowledges the support of the Isaac H. Tuttle Fund, the Ira M. Resnick Foundation, and the Weill Medical College of Cornell University.

All material published for GEM's web site is for informational purposes only. The listing of agencies, products, programs,services and links from this web site do not constitute endorsements or recommendations by the New York Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Medical College of Cornell University. Readers are encouraged to confirm the information contained herein with other sources. New York Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Medical College of Cornell University will not be liable for any direct, indirect, consequential, special, exemplary, or other damages arising therefrom.

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New York-Presbyterian. The University Hospitals of Columbia and Cornell