Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital Acute Care for Elders (ACE) Unit


The Acute Care for Elders (ACE) Unit at the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital was started in February, 2007 and cares for over 1000 older patients each year. It was the first ACE unit in California.

Our Mission

The mission of the ACE Unit is to provide the best inpatient care for hospitalized older adults with a focus on maintaining and improving physical and cognitive function.

Hospitalization is a risky period for older adults. Many of us are aware of older relatives or friends who are not quite the same after hospitalization. Patients may be weaker or have difficulty managing their affairs afterwards. Some of this decline can be avoided through a patient-centered, interdisciplinary, approach using best evidence to guide care.

The ACE unit accomplishes this through:

  • An interdisciplinary team in a prepared  environment focused on the care of older adults.
  • Expert medication review to eliminate unnecessary medications, identify potential medication side-effects or drug interactions.
  • Interventions to maintain physical and mental health such as exercise, socialization, and focus on sleep hygiene.
  • Early planning for discharge to make the transition out of the hospital as smooth as possible.

Patients undergo a comprehensive geriatric assessment by a physician or nurse and also evaluated by rehabilitation experts and medical social workers. An individualized care plan is created that promotes patient independence and reduces the risk for hazards associated with hospitalization. Patients are seen throughout their hospital stay as needed.

The ACE unit exports its knowledge and expertise to other units throughout the hospital through education sessions.

Contact Information

Edgar Pierluissi, MD
Medical Director, Acute Care for Elders (ACE) Unit
Professor of Medicine, Division of Geriatrics
[email protected]

Candace Kim, MD
Associate Clinical Professor, Division of Geriatrics
[email protected]

Annelie Nilsson
Clinical Nurse Specialist
[email protected]