Training Sites

Southern Arizona Veterans Administration Health Care System

The SAVAHCS is a large multi-site system of primary and specialty health care that provides services to eligible veterans who live in a large geographic area of Southern Arizona, and to those veterans who may be traveling through this area from their homes in other states. The system is anchored by a large medical-surgical hospital in Tucson, which provides emergency, intensive and specialty care settings. A large rehabilitation and post-acute care service is also attached to the acute care hospital. There is a regional center for rehabilitation and training of veterans with blindness or low vision. There is also a hospice/palliative unit as well as an acute inpatient psychiatry ward. This hospital also provides a level II Geropsychiatry Unit for the treatment of veterans with dementia and behavioral/psychological complications.  At the same site are multiple outpatient and specialty care clinics, including a Geriatric Primary care team and outpatient mental health clinic. There is an active inpatient detoxification unit as well as 28-day residential programs for rehabilitation of substance use disorders. In addition, an on-site residential rehabilitation program for PTSD is in operation. At this site, fellows will have outpatient clinic time where they will manage patients with a variety of Geriatric Mental health issues. Find more details at the VA's website.

Banner - University Medical Center South

The Inpatient Geropsychiatry Unit is a 14-bed, acute care Geriatric Psychiatry service which accepts older adults with a wide range of presenting problems, some of whom are admitted involuntarily due to danger to self/others. Other patients are admitted with depression/suicidal ideation, bipolar disorders, substance use disorders, and psychotic disorders.  The fellow will see the more acute presentations of older patients and gain experience in the medical/psychiatric management of these common problems. Two half-days per week.

Banner Alzheimer’s Institute

Founded in 2006 by Banner Health, one of the country’s largest nonprofit health care systems, the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute is a collaboration with the University of Arizona Health Sciences researchers and the physicians at Banner – University Medicine. The center offers a comprehensive range of services for affected patients and families, conducts revolutionary studies in the detection, treatment and prevention of Alzheimer’s and works to set a national standard of patient and family care while forging scientific collaborations that bring together institutions and disciplines internationally. The Toole Family Memory Center is a part of the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute, an international leader in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

The Community Living Center at the SAVAHCS

The Community Living Center is a 92-bed extended care facility operating under Long Term Care regulations. Veterans are admitted to CLC after treatment on acute care medical surgical wards. Fellows will develop consultative skills and increase awareness of how best to facilitate psychiatric recommendations. The CLC has five units: Geropsychiatry, Rehabilitation, Hospice/Palliative, and two Interim Care units for long term IV antibiotic administration, wound care, and treatment of other medical issues that require long term care. All units have some patients with dementia or mental health issues. This CLC has teams of medical providers, physiatrist, and hospice/palliative specialists as well as a dedicated psychologist. Fellows will rotate on all the units and work with the primary providers, gaining experience in managing end of life issues, assisting the primary teams with behavioral/emotional issues, and learning Long-Term Care regulations and principles of nonpharmacological management of behavioral issues. Fellows will also gain understanding of the psychosocial issues inherent in congregate living, and how the environment can be a powerful factor in the emotional well-being of the facility residents.