Interdisciplinary Telementoring for Therapists in SNFs to Improve Dementia Care Knowledge and Skills
Innovation in Aging
Occupational, physical, and speech therapists possess knowledge and skills that have the potential to reduce the burden of care and improve the quality of life of skilled nursing facility (SNF) residents living with dementia. Despite this opportunity to impact the well-being of residents with dementia, many therapy practitioners lack specialized training on the management of dementia. Therapy practitioners (n=31) from 22 SNFs participated in eight weekly interdisciplinary educational sessions using the Project ECHO (Extension for Community Health Outcomes) tele-mentoring model. An interdisciplinary team of therapy experts collaborated on the development of the curriculum, which included didactic content on dementia-care best practices as well as case-based learning. This presentation describes the process of developing an interprofessional tele-mentoring therapy education program, challenges encountered during implementation, and strategies to retain learners. Evaluation data from participants will be shared and implications for future tele-mentoring interprofessional educational offerings for therapists will be discussed.
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