Five-weekend care of the elderly certificate course: continuing professional development activity for family physicians.
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PROBLEM ADDRESSED: Primary care practitioners have unique clinical challenges in caring for elderly patients and require educational courses that are specifically designed for their needs in caring for this patient population. OBJECTIVE OF PROGRAM: To improve family physicians' knowledge of and confidence in managing common geriatric problems. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: The accredited course curriculum is delivered on 5 weekends over approximately 6 months.Each weekend focuses on a different theme including cognitive impairment, gait disorders, mental health and pain management, geriatric medical problems, and failure to thrive. Participants complete written assignments between weekend sessions, which involve self-reflection on how the new knowledge and skills gained through the course will be incorporated in the management of elderly patients in their practices. CONCLUSION: The 5-Weekend Care of the Elderly Certificate Course is an accredited continuing professional development program for primary care practitioners. Preliminary evaluation suggests improvement in participants' self-rated knowledge of and confidence in managing geriatric problems. Qualitative data show positive changes in clinical practice.
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