Carla Perissinotto, MD, MHS

Professor of Medicine, Geriatrician, Inpatient Services

In 2017, Dr. Carla Perissinotto was appointed as the first Associate Chief for Geriatrics Clinical Programs at UCSF. Given the growth of clinical programs, the associate chief oversees and manages our both our inpatient and outpatient clinical programs which include Care at Home, Geriatrics consultation in the outpatient setting, and the new Acute Care for the Elderly (ACE) unit at Moffitt-Long Hospital, Orthopedic CO-Management programs and programs which are in development.

Carla is an Associate Professor in the Division of Geriatrics, Department of Medicine. Carla is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine. Carla is dedicated to working in both community and academic settings. Her main work is in UCSF Care at Home--which provides medical care to home bound older adults, and in embedded Geriatrics consult practices. From 2008-2017, Carla served as a primary care and consulting Geriatrician at the Over60 Health Center in Berkeley.

Carla joined the faculty in August 2010 as a clinician-educator and has received multiple awards for her excellence in teaching. Carla is passionate about working with diverse communities and improving the training of internal medicine residents and all learners in the care of elderly patients. Carla also has a special interest in teaching primary care doctors how to more effectively recognize cognitive impairment in the outpatient primary care setting. Carla was also a recipient of the highly-competitive HRSA Geriatric Academic Career Award 2010-2015, with which she developed curricula to teach a wide range of learners on the care of elderly patients in diverse settings. Carla has also gained national and international recognition for her research on the effects of loneliness on the health of older adults. She is frequently invited to discuss her research and discuss the clinical and policy implications of the health effects of loneliness.

At UCSF, she attends on the inpatient Internal Medicine Service, providers Geriatrics consultation in Women's Health Primary Care, the Positive Health 360 practice, and provides primary care to homebound older adults through UCSF Care at Home in San Francisco. Carla is passionate about the care of vulnerable elders and truly believes in sharing this excitement with residents, and other learners via lectures, bedside teaching, small group teaching, home visits, and visits to community senior centers.

From 2008-2017, Carla spent a portion of her clinical time at the Over 60 Health Center, a Federally Qualified Health Center, serving adults over age 55 in Alameda County. At Over 60, Carla directed the educational programs for UCSF learners, and focused on practice change by establishing a team-based model for community-based Geriatrics seeing adults across a continuum of care.

Carla has also had the privilege to work in clinical settings internationally, most notably, El Salvador, Kenya and Mexico. Annually, she volunteers in Chiapas, Mexico at the Hospital San Carlos ( which serves the indigenous people of Chiapas. Carla has written about these experiences on GeriPal. She continues to work on improving the care of older patients in low resource settings across the globe, and has created an opportunity for trainees to volunteer in Chiapas alongside of her.

Academic Focus:
Carla published a paper in the Archives of Internal Medicine on loneliness in Older Adults in 2012 which gained worldwide recognition and has sparked more conversation in the medical community about the health effects of loneliness. Because of the wide prevalence of loneliness in older adults, there has been significant interest from multiple organizations hoping to explore ways to better identify, and intervene on loneliness. Carla is currently exploring potential future research and policy endeavors focused on loneliness.

As a Clinician-educator, Carla is dedicated to improving the Geriatrics training of Internal Medicine residents. Carla is interested ways to improve and integrate Geriatrics curriculum into general medicine practices. She has focused on providing community Geriatrics electives to residents, creating a housecalls program for residents, and embedding Geriatrics into General Medicine and specialty clinics.
BA, 2000 - Anthropology, Barnard College, Columbia University
  • Over 60 Health Center