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Introducing the 4Ms for Age Friendly Care

Our health journey is very personal and it is important to think about what matters most as you age, what your personal needs and wishes are, and how that may change over time. The 4Ms is a framework developed by the John A. Hartford Foundation to help individuals and care providers alike achieve an age-friendly health system.

The 4Ms for age-friendly aging

What Matters Most

As you age, your needs might change. It’s important for you to share your concerns, goals, wishes, needs and experiences with all of your health care providers.

What You Can Do

✓ Tell your care team about the things that matter to you.

✓ Make a list of questions to ask at each health care visit.

✓ Talk with your family and providers about your wishes for care at the end of life.


It’s important to think about how to get around safely as we get older. Staying active helps you maintain your health and independence.

What You Can Do

✓ Talk with your care providers about how you get around at home or go from place to place. Tell them about what’s working and what’s not.

✓ Ask about how you can improve strength, flexibility, and balance.

✓ Check your home for objects you can trip on or missing handrails that can cause falls.

Mind and Memory

Older adults are at risk for dementia (problems with thinking, memory, and reasoning), depression (ongoing sadness or loss of interest) and delirium (sudden confusion), but there are steps you can take to lower your risk.

What You Can Do

✓ Tell your medical provider if you notice any changes in your memory or mood.

✓ Get screened for dementia and depression each year.

✓ If you become confused suddenly, get help right away. Sudden confusion (delirium) is a medical emergency


You might take many medicines now, which can mean more side effects. Some drugs affect us in new ways as we age, too.

What You Can Do

✓ Talk with your medical provider about any side effects that you experience.

✓ Ask your care team to assess how your medicines interact with each other.

✓ Tell your providers about any over-the-counter medicine or natural remedies you take.

Free downloads for your use:

A checklist to help you plan for your care:

Download PDF • 192KB

Learn how to empower yourself on taking your medicines:

Download PDF • 5.73MB

The information on this page is provided by the AgingME GWEP and the John A. Hartford Foundation.


Senscio is a proud partner of AgingME

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $749,891.00. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government. For more information, please visit and


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