Optimizing Geriatric Care: A Guide to Therapeutic Considerations for the Senior Care Patient

enroll now button

Intended Audience

ACPE Universal Activity Number

Activity Type

CE Hours
12 (General or Consultant Recertification)


Dates Available
12/01/2015 to 12/01/2018

Miki Goldwire, Pharm.D., BCPS
Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice
Regis University School of Pharmacy

Allana Sucher, Pharm.D., BCPS
Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice
Regis University School of Pharmacy

Brandon J. Sucher, Pharm.D., BCACP, CDE, AE-C
Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice
Regis University School of Pharmacy

Rhonda Michelle Norwood, Pharm.D., CDE
Primary Care Clinical Pharmacist
MedMark Services, Inc.
VA, Delray Beach CBOC

Peter S. Cogan Ph. D.



This home study activity contains four modules.

This course is an educational resource for consulting pharmacists and pharmacists providing clinical services to elderly adults. Pharmacists completing this course will be able to discuss how elderly patient care may differ from adult care. General and preventative care, neurologic, cardiovascular, and respiratory disease states will be reviewed. This course is approved by the Florida Board of Pharmacy for 12 consultant recertification hours and is self-paced reading.

Module 1:  General Considerations for Geriatric Patients (3 hours)

  1. Medication Safety (1 hour)
  2. Pharmacokinetic Changes in the Elderly (1 hour)
  3. Immunizations in the Elderly (1 hour)

Module 2:  Neurologic Considerations for Geriatric Patients (3 hours)

  1. Management of the Cognitive Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease (1 hour)
  2. Management of Insomnia in Geriatric Patients (1 hour)
  3. Management of Parkinson’s Disease (1 hour)

Module 3:  Cardiovascular Considerations for Geriatric Patients (3 hours)

  1. Management of Dyslipidemia in Geriatric Patients (1.5 hours)
  2. Management of Hypertension in Geriatric Patients (1.5 hours)

Module 4:  Respiratory Considerations for Geriatric Patients (3 hours)

  1. Respiratory Infections in Geriatric Patients (1.5 hours)
  2. Optimizing Care for Patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease through Appropriate Use of Inhalers (1.5 hours)



Module 1:

  • Describe the consequences and risk factors for polypharmacy.
  • Identify risk factors for development of adverse drug events in the elderly.
  • Describe the tools available to identify inappropriate medication use in the elderly.
  • Identify medications that should be avoided in the elderly.
  • State possible methods to decrease inappropriate medication use in the elderly.
  • Describe the physiologic changes that occur in the elderly.
  • Describe the impact of pharmacokinetic changes in the elderly on drug therapy.
  • State common changes that occur in absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of the elderly patient.
  • Identify drugs affected by changes in ADME in the elderly patient.
  • List immunizations that are indicated in the geriatric patient population.
  • Select an appropriate vaccine and dosing schedule given patient-specific factors.
  • Review a patient history to determine if they are up to date on immunizations.

Module 2:

  • Describe the etiology and risk factors for insomnia in the elderly patient.
  • Describe the clinical presentation for patient with insomnia.
  • Identify appropriate non-pharmacotherapy and pharmacotherapy for treatment of insomnia.
  • Select the best therapy for treatment of insomnia based upon specific patient factors.
  • Describe the etiology and risk factors for Parkinson’s disease
  • Describe the clinical presentation of a patient with Parkinson’s disease
  • Identify appropriate pharmacotherapy for treatment of Parkinson’s disease
  • Describe the role of pharmacotherapy in Parkinson’s disease.
  • Describe the risk factors and neuropathologic features associated with AD.
  • Based on mechanism of action, recognize differences between symptomatic and disease modifying treatments for AD and classify AD medications into these categories.
  • Explain the different formulations and delivery systems for AD medications, citing advantages and disadvantages as they relate to optimizing care for patients with AD.
  • When given a patient case, select the most appropriate medication for treating the cognitive symptoms of AD.
  • List the medications without an FDA indication for AD that have been studied in patients with AD, describe the rationale for their proposed mechanism of action, and determine if their use should be recommended for patients with AD based on available evidence.
  • Describe the disease modifying therapeutic strategies under investigation for patients with AD.

Module 3:

  • Describe the four patient groups that can benefit from statin therapy.
  • Identify an appropriate treatment regimen for primary and secondary prevention of ASCVD.
  • Select the most appropriate lipid lowering regimen considering a patient’s age, history and lipid profile.
  • Outline a monitoring plan based on a recommended drug regimen.
  • Classify blood pressure when given a patient’s systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
  • When given a patient case, identify a blood pressure goal for the patient.
  • List lifestyle modifications for the management of hypertension.
  • When given a patient case, select the most appropriate medication for a patient with hypertension.
  • Describe special considerations for managing hypertension in geriatric patients.
  • Describe the monitoring parameters for hypertension and strategies for managing serum potassium and elevations in serum creatinine.

Module 4:

  • Discuss the available devices used to deliver drugs to the lung via the oral inhalation route for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and describe features of each device that pertain to optimal drug delivery.
  • Explain to patients the appropriate use of inhalers to optimize care for patients with COPD.
  • Explain how improper inhalation technique can affect drug delivery via metered dose inhalers or dry powder inhalers.
  • When given a patient case, select the optimal device for the administration of inhaled medications.
  • Describe the impact of pneumonia and influenza in the geriatric patient population.
  • Identify risk factors for healthcare-associated pneumonia (HCAP), aspiration pneumonia, and influenza in the geriatric patient population.
  • Recognize the clinical presentation and diagnostic tests that support the diagnosis of HCAP, aspiration pneumonia, and influenza infection in a geriatric patient.
  • Recommend an appropriate antimicrobial regimen for the treatment of a geriatric patient with HCAP, aspiration pneumonia, and influenza based on patient-specific factors.
  • Review a patient’s medication profile and develop a plan for the patient that will improve the outcomes of therapy for the treatment of HCAP, aspiration pneumonia, or influenza infection.


Course Completion Requirements

All coursework must be completed by the course expiration date. Must complete the final exam with a score of at least 70% or higher on the final exam. Course must be completed within one year of registration. You are only allowed one attempt on the final exam. The University of Florida College of Pharmacy will report CPE credit to CPE Monitor and CE Broker when applicable. If you would like a paper statement of credit, you may print it from your NABP e-profile.


Computer Requirements

Supported Browsers: Because it’s built using web standards, Canvas runs on Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, or any other device with a modern web browser. Canvas supports the most recent versions of Flash and popular web browsers:

  • Internet Explorer 10 and 11
  • Chrome 42 and 43
  • Safari 7 and 8
  • Firefox 37 and 38 (Extended Releases are not supported)
  • Flash 16 and 17 (for recording or viewing audio/video and uploading files)
  • Respondus Lockdown Browser(supporting the latest system requirements)

Required Components: Flash is required in several places in Canvas: media recording/streaming and viewing as well as uploading files to a course or an assignment. Other than these features, Flash is not required to use most areas of Canvas. The Java plug-in is required for screen sharing in Conferences.

Internet Connection: A broadband Internet connection is strongly recommended. Slower connections should still be able to access e-Learning, but will take longer to load. A wired Ethernet connection is more dependable for test-taking than a wireless connection. Special Note about Satellite service: Some users with satellite Internet service may find their online courses do not load quickly or consistently due to satellite network design issues.



This course  in its entirety is copyrighted by the University of Florida Continuing Pharmacy Education and may not be duplicated or reproduced for any other purpose without specific written permission.



Refund Policy for CE Courses

Privacy and Confidentiality Policy


Contact Information

Please contact Continuing Pharmacy Education at cesupport@ahc.ufl.edu



This course received no outside funding support.

ACPE LogoThe University of Florida College of Pharmacy is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education.