Students studying geriatrics in Maine live for weeks in N.E. nursing homes

Matthew Sharbaugh checked himself into a nursing home recently, complaining of chronic pulmonary obstructive disease, congestive heart failure, and right-side weakness from a recent stroke. He is 24.

Sharbaugh had signed away his youth for the next 12 days to play the part of an 85-year-old man in ailing health at the Old Soldiers’ Home in Chelsea.

A second-year student at the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine in Biddeford, Maine, Sharbaugh is one of six students living in a New England nursing home this summer as part of the school’s Learning by Living experiment, founded in 2005 to provide students interested in geriatrics with firsthand experience of the care of the elderly. This year is the first the program has expanded to include a facility in the Boston area. continue reading>>

Source: June Q. Wu (The Boston Globe, July 19, 2010)

Photo: Medical student Matt Sharbaugh is spending two weeks as a patient at the Old Soldiers’ Home in Chelsea. Professor Marilyn Gugliucci, portrayed his adult daughter. (Photos By Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff)

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