National high-quality, in-network psychiatric care leader Talkiatry today announced that it has launched specialty telepsychiatry services for adults aged 65 and over. Talkiatry is committed to providing greater access to quality, specialised care for the often-overlooked aging patient population through its easy-to-navigate telehealth platform and team of board-certified geriatric psychiatrists.
The 65-and-over population in the US is projected to double by 2050, increasing from 48 million to 88 million people. Of the 14% of older adults living with a mental disorder, there are generally two types of patients in need of psychiatric care. The first is those who have experienced chronic psychiatric issues for decades and could benefit from specialised geriatric psychiatry services focused on helping them evolve their treatment by addressing worsening cognitive issues and accommodating changes to how their bodies metabolise medication. There’s also a large population of patients who experience circumstantial psychiatric challenges later in life, shaped by stressful experiences such as loss, isolation, and physical health decline.
“Geriatric care, especially geriatric psychiatry, needs to be both specific and broad, as there are so many ways a person can age. Talkiatry’s geriatric psychiatry services cater to and attend to all aging patients,” said Georgia Gaveras, DO, co-founder and chief medical officer, Talkiatry. “Our team of specialised psychiatrists understands what barriers geriatric patients are experiencing, knows what questions to ask, and is trained to sensitively and effectively treat older people. We provide truly comprehensive psychiatric care focused on creating positive experiences and achieving quality outcomes.”
Some aging patients are homebound with limited mobility or struggle with the logistics of in-person appointments. Others live in rural areas with limited access to specialists or grapple with the stigma around mental health treatment and may be hesitant to accept help or start medications. Talkiatry’s geriatric telepsychiatry services address these barriers to ensure anyone navigating loneliness, depression, or any other mental health challenge receives the care they need.
With more than 300 full-time, licensed psychiatrists, Talkiatry is well-equipped to see patients aged 65 and over. For the geriatric patient population, initial appointments are extended from 60 to 75 minutes, allowing more time for psychiatrists to establish rapport. It also helps orient and educate patients on the value and purpose of telepsychiatry so they feel at ease throughout the process, which includes both a cognitive and functional assessment.
Talkiatry’s patient care coordinators also proactively contact patients via phone to help them get online for their appointments. If a patient needs additional or ongoing help navigating the platform, the care coordinator or psychiatrist can call them before the session to ensure they’re properly set up for their appointment.
“Everyone deserves access to quality psychiatric care, especially older patients who are regularly navigating some of life’s most challenging and stressful events, such as declining independence, memory impairment, and the loss of family members and friends,” said Robert Krayn, CEO and co-founder of Talkiatry. “We want older people who need psychiatric care to know that quality, specialised telehealth services are readily available from a team of Talkiatry psychiatrists uniquely suited to support them.”