Public Release: 

O'Neill to receive GSA's 2014 Joseph T. Freeman Award

The Gerontological Society of America

The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) -- the nation's largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to the field of aging -- has chosen Desmond "Des" O'Neill, MA, MD, FRCPI, AGSF, FRCP(Glasg), FRCP, FRCP(Edin), of Tallaght Hospital Dublin and Trinity College Dublin as the 2014 recipient of the Joseph T. Freeman Award.

This honor, given annually, is a lectureship in geriatrics and is awarded to a prominent physician in the field of aging -- both in research and practice -- who is a member of the Society's Health Sciences section.

The award presentation will take place at GSA's 67th Annual Scientific Meeting, which will be held from November 5 to 9 in Washington, DC. This conference is organized to foster interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers, educators, and practitioners who specialize in the study of the aging process. Visit for further details.

The Joseph T. Freeman Award was established in 1977 through a bequest from a patient's estate as a tribute to a leading physician and one of the Society's distinguished members and past presidents. The winner traditionally presents a lecture at the Annual Scientific Meeting the following year.

O'Neill is a professor of medical gerontology and a consultant physician in geriatric and stroke medicine at Tallaght Hospital Dublin and Trinity College Dublin, as well as chair of the National Centre for Arts and Health at Tallaght Hospital.

His research focuses on aging and the neurosciences, with a particular emphasis on driving and transportation. He has published over 300 peer-reviewed papers and chapters, and was the author of the 2013 book "Ageing and Caring," which was directed toward older people and their adult children.

As a past-president and founding member of the European Union Geriatric Medicine Society (EUGMS), he has been prominent in developing gerontology and geriatric medicine at regional, national, and international levels. In 2010, he chaired the organizational committee for the 6th Congress of the EUGMS, the largest meeting devoted to geriatric medicine ever held in Europe. He also is a former associate editor for that organization's new journal, European Geriatric Medicine.

O'Neill is a GSA fellow, which represents the Society's highest class of membership.


The Gerontological Society of America (GSA) is the nation's oldest and largest interdisciplinary organization devoted to research, education, and practice in the field of aging. The principal mission of the Society -- and its 5,500+ members -- is to advance the study of aging and disseminate information among scientists, decision makers, and the general public. GSA's structure also includes a policy institute, the National Academy on an Aging Society, and an educational branch, the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.

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