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“There’ll never be enough geriatric psychiatrists or geriatric medicine specialists to take care of this huge wave of people that are aging,” Kirwin said.

The Institute of Medicine report recognizes that. It says all health workers who see older patients _ including primary care physicians, nurses, physicians’ assistants and social workers _ need some training to recognize the signs of geriatric mental health problems and provide at least basic care. To get there, it called for changes in how Medicare and Medicaid pay for mental health services, stricter licensing requirements for health workers, and for the government to fund appropriate training programs.