Sept 26-28, 2016 at the Ottawa Hospital.  The learning objectives of this 2 or 3 day in-class education is enhance clinical expertise and skills as well as increase understanding of patients who would benefit from specialized geriatric services.  Click here for registration details.

Jolene Heil, RN, ET, MCIScWH, Clinical Nurse Specialist - Wound Care at Providence Care presented Wound Management in Long-Term Care to health care professionals in South East Ontario on June 14, 2016.  A copy of the pdf flyer and presentation are available below.

Fatima Ali, PharmD, RPh, BCPS, Consultant Pharmacist, Providence Manor and MediSystem Pharmacy gave a presentation on High Risk Medications in the Elderly to health care professionals in South East Ontario on March 8, 2016. A pdf copy of the presentation and event flyer are available below.

Dr. Robyn Houlden, Professor and Chair, Division of Endocrinology, Queen's University, gave a presentation on Diabetes in Long-Term Care to health care professionals in South East Ontario on May 10, 2016.

Held at the Holiday Inn Toronto Yorkdale; The Regional Geriatric Programs of Ontario Annual Education Day is a vehicle for advancing clinical skills and knowledge for practitioners and professionals who deliver specialized geriatric care.

This article outlines the issue of polypharmacy among older adults and their increased risk for adverse drug reactions. The article describes:

  • Age-related changes,
  • The lack of evidence for medication use in the elderly, and
  • Strategies for reducing polypharmacy.

The aging of the Cana­dian population presents medical and ethical challenges for clinicians. Increasingly, there is a need to ad­dress the issue of vulnerable older adults who live at risk in the community. Many have significant cognitive, psychiatric, and physical problems yet do not seek assistance. Assessment and intervention in these cases requires an interdisciplinary approach. An understanding of risk factors, the clinical evaluation process, competency issues, and basic management strategies is integral to good care.

Polypharmacy is a common problem encountered by clinicians caring for elderly. It is encountered in all care settings ranging from outpatient to long-term care (LTC), where it is particularly linked with falls and other associated problems. Various tools have been developed to help prevent the omission of important appropriate medications and prevent medicine combinations that may cause adverse drug reactions. The ARMOR tool (Assess, Review, Minimize, Optimize, Reassess) is an attempt to consolidate recommendations into a functional interactive tool.

Polypharmacy refers to the effects of taking multiple medications concurrently to manage coexisting health problems, such as diabetes and hypertension. Too often, polypharmacy becomes problematic, such as when patients are prescribed too many medications by multiple healthcare providers working independently of each other. Also, drug interactions can occur if no single healthcare provider knows the patient’s complete medication picture.

Among older adults, polypharmacy is a common problem. Currently, 44% of men and 57% of women older than age 65 take five or more medications per week; about 12% of both men and women take 10 or more medications per week. These agents include both prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) preparations, such as vitamin and mineral supplements and herbal products.

Statistics show around one in three unplanned hospital admissions for older Australians are related to issues with their medicines – and half are preventable. A new educational program targeting health professionals, particularly nurses and pharmacists, aims to reduce the rate of adverse medicine events in patients aged 75 and over. “NPS MedicineWise is encouraging all health professionals, including pharmacists and nurses, to adopt a coordinated approach to medicines management as an important aspect of a care plan for an older person, and to engage older people, their family and carers as active partners in health decisions."

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