March 28, 2024

New OU Health Geriatric Medicine Clinic Opening at Epworth Villa Retirement Community

OKLAHOMA CITY — OU Health is bringing advanced care for seniors through a new senior health clinic at Epworth Villa Retirement Community in northwest Oklahoma City, providing specialized care for an aging population.

Opened on March 22, 2024, the OU Health Geriatrics at Epworth Villa clinic, 14901 N. Pennsylvania Ave., provides geriatrics primary and specialty care to the 425 full-time residents who call Epworth Villa home, as well as to adults over age 65 who live in the surrounding area.

“We are delighted to offer greater access to both our residents and the senior community in Oklahoma,” said Epworth Villa Retirement Community President and CEO Ron Kelly. “This will make a huge difference in the lives of our seniors.”

Oklahoma has approximately 875,877 adults aged 60 and older and approximately 140,000 adults aged 80 or older, according to The Oklahoma Department Human Services. Providing access to quality healthcare specific to their needs is a top priority for OU Health.

“OU Health is committed to enhancing the well-being of older adults with accessible, compassionate and comprehensive healthcare that focuses on an individual’s needs, no matter their stage of life,” said geriatrician Lee A. Jennings, M.D., MSHS, Chief of Geriatric Medicine at OU Health. “Not only will Epworth Villa residents benefit from receiving comprehensive care at home, but this new partnership also provides an opportunity for residents of northwest Oklahoma City to receive geriatrics primary and specialty care closer to home.”

This clinic provides senior primary care services, diagnostic visits for patients with cognitive concerns, and specialized geriatrics care for:

  • Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias, especially with behavioral symptoms or safety concerns
  • Arthritis-related pain and mobility concerns
  • Balance and fall prevention
  • Brain health
  • Caregiver strain
  • Complex care with multiple conditions
  • Depression/mood disorders impacting daily activities
  • Difficulty with daily activities due to problems with cognition or mobility
  • Driving concerns
  • Healthy aging and prevention
  • Medication interactions and side effects
  • Memory concerns or abnormal cognitive screen needing further evaluation
  • Need for goals of care conversation and advance care planning
  • Polypharmacy or high-risk medication use

If you or a loved one needs comprehensive and compassionate senior health care call (405) 486-1372 to schedule for OU Health – Geriatrics at Epworth Villa. The team of experts at this clinic will include Seki Balogun, M.D., Geriatrician, and Rachel Hand, PA-C, an advanced practice provider specialized in senior health.

Learn more about the full suite of Senior Primary Care and Geriatric Medicine services at OU Health by visiting our website.



OU Health is the state’s only comprehensive academic health system of hospitals, clinics and centers of excellence. The flagship academic healthcare system is the clinical partner of the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, one of the most comprehensive academic and research campuses in the country. With 10,000 employees and more than 1,300 physicians and advanced practice providers, OU Health is home to Oklahoma’s largest doctor network with a complete range of specialty care. OU Health serves Oklahoma and the region with the state’s only dedicated children’s hospital, the only National Cancer Institute-Designated OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center and Oklahoma’s flagship hospital, which serves as the state’s only Level 1 trauma center. Oklahoma Children’s Hospital OU Health was named one of the Top 50 Children’s Hospital for Pediatric Cardiology & Heart Surgery and Pediatric Gastroenterology & GI Surgery by U.S. News & World Report in its most recent rankings. OU Health’s mission is to lead healthcare in patient care, education and research. To learn more, visit

We Remember

As we reflect upon the significance of today’s date in Oklahoma and our Country’s history, we remember and honor the 168 lives lost and those forever changed by the tragic Oklahoma City Bombing on April 19, 1995. Though time passes, their memories remain etched in our hearts.

Here on the Epworth Campus, we have a seedling from the “Survivor Tree.” It is part of the American Elm that withstood the 1995 bombing and is still in its original location when it was planted around 1920. It is a living testament to the spirit of resilience and courage of the Oklahoma City community, the American people, and survivors everywhere.

Water Aerobics – A Resident Favorite at Epworth Villa

The water aerobics classes offered at Epworth Villa are a favorite. They have a positive impact on those who attend, both physically and mentally. Led by Wellness Coordinator, Mary Alvarez, the class meets several times a week and residents are faithful to the class and don’t like to miss it. Alvarez encourages people to “take the plunge and try this low-impact workout that builds muscle strength and boosts your endurance. We have fun and it can be as challenging as you want it to be.”

Alvarez is respected by the Residents for her ability to plan each class and challenge those who are ready to push themselves. She also shares that she has seen participants overcome their fear of water – some have never swum before! She notes that some exercisers don’t feel stable on land but can really increase their physical activity through water aerobics.

Resident Gene Spillman observed that “Mary’s class flows smoothly, and they are always different. She pushes and inspires us to move the best that we can. She’s a great motivator.”

No one will argue about the physical benefits of water aerobics for seniors. Water aerobics can improve range of motion, enhance balance, and increase cardiovascular endurance. Alvarez says that every part of the body is exercised, and you feel wonderful when you get out of the water. Our pool and class are a safe space for anyone wanting to start an exercise program.

Water Aerobics also has mental advantages. Alvarez says that many of the exercises she incorporates into class require brain flexibility, so “not only is the body being challenged but the brain is too!” Stimulating the brain as well as the body improves participants’ overall well-being.

Lastly, the social benefits of water aerobics cannot be overlooked. The group atmosphere creates a sense of community and encourages social interaction. Class regular, Sallie Spillman adds, “When we are all together laughing and having fun, we can’t wait to come back again. We have so much fun, that we forget what we are doing is good for us!”

So, what are you waiting for? Grab your swimsuit and adventurous spirit and join a water aerobics class. You will be met with open, albeit wet arms and a big splash.

Living in Community Day by Day – Rev. Laura Glover

Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke bread at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved. Acts 2:46-47

This I absolutely know to be true: life is richer and better when lived in loving community. The passage above records how the early church lived and how the amazing Good News of Jesus Christ spread so far, so fast — they lived and shared life generously in community. They prayed for one another, shared meals together, worshiped together, and helped each other to thrive. The joy and generosity of the early Christians drew others to “come and see” and to believe in this way of life in which everyone thrived.

Despite what popular culture tries to tell us, we are not meant to go it alone in life. Jesus modeled how to live in community as well. The first thing he did in ministry was to draw around him a community of believers who would share life together as well as share ministry together. When Jesus fed the multitudes, he did so by pooling the resources of those around him. Even when he was praying in the Garden of Gethsemane, he asked his disciples to pray with him and to share in that most painful time. As the popular saying goes, “A problem shared is a problem halved.”

Like Jesus and his followers, we are meant to live in community, and what a wonderful gift we have at Epworth Villa to live together in such a loving community! But what does it look like for us day to day? This is what we will be learning and celebrating together throughout the season of Lent. Whether by participating in the small group study of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Life Together or living out the practices in our community Lenten project of “Grow Deeper Together,” I pray you will be a part of learning how to live together day by day in loving and generous community so we can all thrive together.