Drug and Alcohol Concerns in Older Adults

As the elder population increases, so does the number of older people with chemical health concerns. This course provides an introduction to and insight on the unique drug and alcohol issues associated with this generation. Communication barriers and strategies for initial conversations regarding these issues are also discussed.

This is a self-paced course with optional knowledge check quizzes after each lesson. These non-graded quizzes allow you to check your understanding of the lesson objectives before proceeding to the next lesson. After the final lesson you will be required to take the final exam. You must score 80% or higher to pass the course and obtain a certificate of completion.

  • Explain differences in the generational as well as cultural beliefs and behaviors of Baby Boomers and Elder Adults.
  • Differentiate between use, abuse, dependency and misuse regarding alcohol and other drugs.
  • State the medical view of addiction/dependency.
  • Describe barriers to and effective communication strategies for discussing drug and alcohol concerns with older persons.
Contact Time

2 contact hour(s) based on 60 minute contact hour

Estimated Time

The estimated time for completion for this activity is 2 hours

Intended Audience

This course is designed to meet the continuing education requirements of health care professionals, such as Licensed Practical Nurses or Registered Nurses, Social Workers and Physical, Speech or Occupational Therapists.

Course Planning Team

Kathy Richie, BSN, RN; Sherry Hanson, BA, LADC

Course Expiration Date

As required by ANCC, this continuing nursing education activity must carry an expiration date. You must complete the content, Final Quiz and Course Survey on or before that day. The last day to successfully complete this course and receive a Certificate of Completion will be December 31, 2019.

WNA/CEAP - Wisconsin Nurses Association
"Rochester Community and Technical College is an approved provider of continuing nursing education by the Wisconsin Nurses Association, an accredited approver by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation."
Provider Approval Number 0149-006;
Disclosure Statements:

Commercial Support: This course was developed in accordance with ANCC Commercial Support Guidelines. No commercial support was accepted for the development of this course.

Non-endorsement of Products and Off Label Use: This course provides a balanced view of therapeutic options. Use of generic names is always considered before using trade names. Consequently, if trade names are necessary, when available, we will use trade names from several companies. RCTC and the course planning team do not endorsed any products or drugs that may be mentioned in this course.

Author Originating

Sherry Hanson - BA LADC

Sherry is a Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor. Her degree is from Metropolitan State University, Minneapolis, MN, with a dual major in Addiction Studies and Personnel Administration. She started her career working in a detox unit while at the same time working as a counselor in a program focusing on chronic alcoholics and addicts. Her experience expanded while working in traditional and long term outpatient treatment for women, diversion and treatment readiness programs, as well as education and prevention. She has spoken to business and community organizations about various chemical health related topics and is passionate about debunking myths and reducing the stigma related to chemical use, abuse, and addiction issues.


Materials used in connection with this course may be subject to copyright protection. Retention of the materials for longer than the class term, unauthorized further dissemination of the materials, or use of copyrighted materials in any way other than intended for this class is prohibited by Copyright and Teach Act laws.


This course was developed with Rochester Community and Technical College's Continuing Education and Workforce Development Division located in Rochester Minnesota. Development was funded from the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System.

Course Code
Course Category
Professional Health