Eric Widera

Title(s)Professor, Medicine
SchoolSchool of Medicine
Phone415-221-4810 ext. 24614
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    Collapse Biography 
    Collapse Education and Training
    University of California, Irvine, IrvineB.S.06/1997Biology
    University of California, San Francisco, San FranciscoM.D.2002 Medicine
    Mount Sinai Hospital, New York06/2005Internal Medicine
    University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco06/2006Geriatric Medicine
    Collapse Awards and Honors
    HRSA2007  - 2010Geriatrics Academic Career Award
    UCSF2009Haile T. Debas Academy of Medical Educators Excellence in Teaching Award
    UCSF2009Teacher of the Year, Division of Geriatrics
    Hartford Foundation2010  - 2011Center of Excellence Faculty Scholar
    Hastings Center 2011Cunniff-Dixon Physician Award
    UCSF2013School of Medicine Excellence in Teaching Award for Clinical Faculty
    AAHPM2014PDIA Palliative Medicine National Leadership Award
    UCSF2015UCSF GME Excellence and Innovation Award
    AAHPM2015AAHPM Hospice and Palliative Medicine Leaders Under 40

    Collapse Overview 
    Collapse Overview
    Eric Widera is a clinician-educator in the Division of Geriatrics. His main goal is to improve the care provided to elderly patients with severe chronic and/or terminal conditions through program development and educational innovations. Eric accomplishes this through various leadership roles, including Director of the Hospice & Palliative Care Service at the San Francisco VA Medical Center and Program Director for the Geriatrics Fellowship at UCSF. He is also on the Board of Directors for the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM). Eric received his medical school training at UCSF and his internal medicine training at Mount Sinai Hospital. He returned to UCSF to complete a fellowship in Geriatric Medicine. He joined the faculty at UCSF in August of 2006. Since then, Eric has been the recipient of numerous grants and awards including a Geriatric Academic Career Award (GACA), the Hastings Center Cunniff-Dixon Physician Award, AAHPM Hospice and Palliative Medicine Leaders Under 40 award, and the AAHPM PDIA Palliative Medicine National Leadership Award. He is also a co-founder of GeriPal, a Geriatrics and Palliative Care blog and podcast, as well as ePrognosis, an online set of prognostic calculators for the elderly.

    Dr. Widera's clinical activities are primarily based at the San Francisco VA Medical Center. He attends on and is the Director of the Hospice & Palliative Care Service at the VA. This is a busy and growing service that performs inpatient palliative care consults in the acute hospital setting and the VA Community Living Center (CLC). The Hospice and Palliative Care Service also provides primary care for a 10-bed hospice unit located within the CLC, as well as serves veterans living in the community through an outpatient Palliative Care Clinic. Eric’s other clinical responsibilities include attending on the internal medicine inpatient ward service at the San Francisco VA and supervising geriatrics fellows in caring for veterans residing in the Community Living Center.

    Dr. Widera's academic focus is on improving the care we give to elderly patients with severe chronic and/or terminal conditions through program development and educational innovations. He oversees a host of interdisciplinary learners who rotate on the Hospice and Palliative Care Service at the San Francisco VA, including internal medicine residents, social work interns, and nursing students. Eric is also the Program Director for the Geriatrics fellowship at UCSF. His other interests include how the use of social media sites, like GeriPal.org, can influence medical education and clinical practice.

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    Collapse Bibliographic 
    Collapse Publications
    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help.
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    1. Farrell TW, Catlin C, Chodos AH, Naik AD, Widera E, Moye J. Caring for Unbefriended Older Adults and Adult Orphans: A Clinician Survey. Clin Gerontol. 2019 Jul 15; 1-10. PMID: 31305222.
      View in: PubMed
    2. Widera E, Trucil DE, Smith AK. Making and Measuring an Impact in a Digital World: The Role of Social Media and the Medical Journal. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2019 Mar 15. PMID: 30875086.
      View in: PubMed
    3. Willham K, Covinsky K, Widera E. Geriatrics Literature 2017 Year in Review. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2018 Sep; 66(9):1665-1669. PMID: 30207597.
      View in: PubMed
    4. Humphreys J, Ahalt C, Stijacic-Cenzer I, Widera E, Williams B. Six-Month Emergency Department Use among Older Adults Following Jail Incarceration. J Urban Health. 2018 Aug; 95(4):523-533. PMID: 29204845.
      View in: PubMed
    5. Jedrzejczak J, Mazurkiewicz-Beldzinska M, Szmuda M, Majkowska-Zwolinska B, Steinborn B, Ryglewicz D, Owczuk R, Bartkowska-Sniatkowska A, Widera E, Rejdak K, Sieminski M, Naganska E. Convulsive status epilepticus management in adults and children: Report of the Working Group of the Polish Society of Epileptology. Neurol Neurochir Pol. 2018 Aug; 52(4):419-426. PMID: 29937151.
      View in: PubMed
    6. Willham K, Covinsky K, Widera E. Geriatrics Literature 2016 Year in Review. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2017 Oct; 65(10):2146-2150. PMID: 28873217.
      View in: PubMed
    7. Malani PN, Widera E. The Promise of Palliative Care: Translating Clinical Trials to Clinical Care. JAMA. 2016 Nov 22; 316(20):2090-2091. PMID: 27893113.
      View in: PubMed
    8. Farrell TW, Widera E, Rosenberg L, Rubin CD, Naik AD, Braun U, Torke A, Li I, Vitale C, Shega J. AGS Position Statement: Making Medical Treatment Decisions for Unbefriended Older Adults. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2017 01; 65(1):14-15. PMID: 27874181.
      View in: PubMed
    9. Zapata JA, Widera E. Partial Codes-A Symptom of a Larger Problem. JAMA Intern Med. 2016 08 01; 176(8):1058-9. PMID: 27295527.
      View in: PubMed
    10. McKee KY, Widera E. Habitual Prescribing of Laxatives-It's Time to Flush Outdated Protocols Down the Drain. JAMA Intern Med. 2016 08 01; 176(8):1217-9. PMID: 27322940.
      View in: PubMed
    11. Talebreza S, Widera E. A Perspective on Hospice Reform and Additional Caregiver Support-Reply. JAMA Intern Med. 2016 07 01; 176(7):1032-3. PMID: 27379480.
      View in: PubMed
    12. Widera E, Talebreza S. Variability in Hospice Care at the Very End of Life. JAMA Intern Med. 2016 Mar; 176(3):370-1. PMID: 26856885.
      View in: PubMed
    13. Talebreza S, Widera E. Advance directives: navigating conflicts between expressed wishes and best interests. Am Fam Physician. 2015 Apr 01; 91(7):480-4. PMID: 25884748.
      View in: PubMed
    14. Bowman C, Widera E. Feeding tube placement in patients with advanced cancer: a teachable moment. JAMA Intern Med. 2015 Jan; 175(1):15-6. PMID: 25384092.
      View in: PubMed
    15. Rivera V, Yukawa M, Aronson L, Widera E. Teaching geriatric fellows how to teach: a needs assessment targeting geriatrics fellowship program directors. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2014 Dec; 62(12):2377-82. PMID: 25516033.
      View in: PubMed
    16. McClymont KM, Lee SJ, Schonberg MA, Widera E, Miao Y, Smith AK. Usefulness and effect of online prognostic calculators. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2014 Dec; 62(12):2444-5. PMID: 25516045; PMCID: PMC4273751.
    17. Talebreza S, Widera E. The hospice referral. Am Fam Physician. 2014 May 01; 89(9):745-7. PMID: 24784339.
      View in: PubMed
    18. Hauer KE, Soni K, Cornett P, Kohlwes J, Hollander H, Ranji SR, Ten Cate O, Widera E, Calton B, O'Sullivan PS. Developing entrustable professional activities as the basis for assessment of competence in an internal medicine residency: a feasibility study. J Gen Intern Med. 2013 Aug; 28(8):1110-4. PMID: 23595926; PMCID: PMC3710378.
    19. Widera E. What's to blame for falls and fractures? Poor sleep or the sleeping medication?: Comment on "Nonbenzodiazepine sleep medication use and hip fractures in nursing home residents". JAMA Intern Med. 2013 May 13; 173(9):761-2. PMID: 23459766.
      View in: PubMed
    20. Calton BA, Widera E. Teaching serious illness communication through an innovative workshop. Med Educ. 2013 May; 47(5):533. PMID: 23574093.
      View in: PubMed
    21. Cruz M, Covinsky K, Widera EW, Stijacic-Cenzer I, Lee SJ. Predicting 10-year mortality for older adults. JAMA. 2013 Mar 06; 309(9):874-6. PMID: 23462780; PMCID: PMC3760279.
    22. Fischberg D, Bull J, Casarett D, Hanson LC, Klein SM, Rotella J, Smith T, Storey CP, Teno JM, Widera E. Five things physicians and patients should question in hospice and palliative medicine. J Pain Symptom Manage. 2013 Mar; 45(3):595-605. PMID: 23434175.
      View in: PubMed
    23. Lakin JR, Widera E, Doe EW. Something just doesn't smell quite right. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2013 Feb; 61(2):313. PMID: 23405941.
      View in: PubMed
    24. Widera EW, Block SD. Managing grief and depression at the end of life. Am Fam Physician. 2012 Aug 01; 86(3):259-64. PMID: 22962989.
      View in: PubMed
    25. Yourman LC, Lee SJ, Schonberg MA, Widera EW, Smith AK. Prognostic indices for older adults: a systematic review. JAMA. 2012 Jan 11; 307(2):182-92. PMID: 22235089; PMCID: PMC3792853.
    26. Widera EW, Rosenfeld KE, Fromme EK, Sulmasy DP, Arnold RM. Approaching patients and family members who hope for a miracle. J Pain Symptom Manage. 2011 Jul; 42(1):119-25. PMID: 21641763.
      View in: PubMed
    27. Gonzales MJ, Widera E. Nausea and other nonpain symptoms in long-term care. Clin Geriatr Med. 2011 May; 27(2):213-28. PMID: 21641507.
      View in: PubMed
    28. Widera E, Covinsky KE. Fulfilling our obligation to the caregiver: it's time for action: comment on "Translation of a dementia caregiver support program in a health care system--REACH VA". Arch Intern Med. 2011 Feb 28; 171(4):359-60. PMID: 21357812; PMCID: PMC4115074.
    29. Widera E, Steenpass V, Marson D, Sudore R. Finances in the older patient with cognitive impairment: "He didn't want me to take over". JAMA. 2011 Feb 16; 305(7):698-706. PMID: 21325186; PMCID: PMC3799787.
    30. Smith AK, Cenzer IS, Knight SJ, Puntillo KA, Widera E, Williams BA, Boscardin WJ, Covinsky KE. The epidemiology of pain during the last 2 years of life. Ann Intern Med. 2010 Nov 02; 153(9):563-9. PMID: 21041575.
      View in: PubMed
    31. Widera E, Chang A, Chen HL. Presenteeism: a public health hazard. J Gen Intern Med. 2010 Nov; 25(11):1244-7. PMID: 20549378.
      View in: PubMed
    32. Widera E, Pantilat SZ. Hospitalization as an opportunity to integrate palliative care in heart failure management. Curr Opin Support Palliat Care. 2009 Dec; 3(4):247-51. PMID: 19730104.
      View in: PubMed
    33. Widera, E, Smith, AK. .Geriatrics and Aging. Pain Management in Moderate and Advanced Dementias. 2009; 7(12):353-356.
    34. Widera E, Sulica R. Pulmonary artery sarcoma misdiagnosed as chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension. Mt Sinai J Med. 2005 Nov; 72(6):360-4. PMID: 16358159.
      View in: PubMed