International Psychogeriatrics

Guest Editorial

An integrated model for defining the scope of psychogeriatrics: the five Cs

Joel Sadavoya1

a1 Professor and Sam and Judy Pencer and Family Chair in Applied General Psychiatry at the University of Toronto, and Head of Geriatric and Community Psychiatry Programs, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, Canada Email:

Psychogeriatrics is a specialty defined by its many contrasts and complexities. Over-reliance on biological models sometimes artificially narrows the breadth and content of psychogeriatric research, educational programs, service delivery and management models to the detriment of patient care. This guest editorial proposes a conceptual model that defines the scope of the field and provides a structure that overlays standard approaches to diagnosis and formulation. Five key defining elements of psychogeriatrics – the five “Cs” – are explored: complexity, chronicity, comorbidity, continuity and context.

(Online publication June 09 2009)