The purpose of the Vanderbilt Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program is to develop leaders who provide the best possible care to their patients and make important contributions to the field of geriatrics, to healthcare, and to the communities in which they work. Through prioritizing education and offering diverse clinical experiences, our interdisciplinary, multi-campus program at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and the VA Tennessee Valley Healthcare System has trained 34 fellows since its inception in 2000. Our fellowship graduates hold successful careers in academic medicine, community leadership, private practice, and additional subspecialty areas including Hematology/Oncology, Cardiology, and Palliative Care. The program is affiliated with the Vanderbilt Center for Quality in Aging, the Middle Tennessee Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP), and the VA Tennessee Valley Geriatric Research Education, and Clinical Center (GRECC).


Training leaders in age-friendly healthcare


The Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and School of Medicine is designed to enable fellows upon completion of the program to be able to:
1. provide patient care that is compassionate, appropriate, and effective for the promotion of health and the management of health problems related to aging;
2. apply established and evolving knowledge in the biomedical, clinical, epidemiological, and social-behavioral sciences to their care of patients; 
3. improve the patient care that they provide by continuously assessing their performance and pursuing learning opportunities related to quality improvement;
4. effectively care for patients by exchanging information and collaborating with patients, their families, and other health professionals;
5. conduct their professional life in accordance with the expectations of the profession of medicine and society;
6. enhance the system of healthcare to provide optimal and inclusive healthcare;
7. pursue a scholarly career as a practitioner or in academic medicine as an educator or researcher.


1) Clinical Geriatric Medicine 

• One-year clinical fellowship that focuses on the evaluation and management of the unique healthcare needs and treatment preferences of older adults.  

• Options are available to join the “Triple Threat Track,” which customizes the experience for those pursuing multiple sub-specialties (e.g., geriatric cardiology, geriatric rheumatology, geriatric oncology, geriatric hospitalist, geriatric infectious diseases, palliative medicine, etc.). 

2) VA Special Fellowship in Advanced Geriatrics >> 

•    Two-year program that equips trainees to further clinical skills, contribute to the improvement of clinical practice, and advance scholarly pursuits that will benefit care for elderly veterans and all older Americans. 

• Advanced degree (e.g., MPH, MSCI) is available pending funding. 

• Completion of a 1-year Clinical Geriatric Medicine track is required. 

3) VA Quality Scholars Track >> 

• Two-year program in which participants learn to develop and apply new knowledge for the ongoing improvement of healthcare services for VA and the nation.  

• Completion of a 1-year Clinical Geriatric Medicine track is required. 

4) Aging Research Fellowship 

• Mentored research training program that promotes the discovery and translation of new biomedical knowledge for the purpose of improving the lives of older adults. 

• Two or more years in duration. 

• Completion of a 1-year Clinical Geriatric Medicine track is required. 

Clinical Rotations

A combination of longitudinal, block, and elective opportunities provides a broad educational perspective over 20 different sites of care:<

  • Vanderbilt University Hospital’s Acute Care for Elderly (ACE) Unit
  • Inpatient geriatrics consult service
  • Vanderbilt-affiliated nursing homes
  • VA and Vanderbilt outpatient geriatric primary and consultative care
  • VA and Vanderbilt subspecialty opportunities in Wound Care, Geriatric Psychiatry, Neurology, Rheumatology, Endocrinology, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Perioperative Medicine, Autonomics, Urology, and other elective specialties
  • Hospice and Palliative Medicine
  • Home care and community health

Clinical Experiences: Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program