Choose Your Courses
Intensive Didactic Lectures - 3 CE Units
Primer of Psychopharmacology
This 3-hour course is a prerequisite for all other classes and is designed for individuals who have little to no background in psychopharmacology. The contents were developed as an introduction to the drugs commonly used to treat mental health conditions through the use of a holistic framework known as the psychobiosocial model of care. It explains the:
Is it ethnic sensitivity or racial profiling?
Most providers are required to take continuing education courses on ethnic and cultural differences but can these variations also affect drug response? This topic has been debated with great vigor, but with little hard data. If differences do in fact exist, how can they be used to optimize clinical decision-making without stereotyping? This course on Transcultural Psychopharmacology will explore the genetic and cultural factors that influence an individual’s reactions to psychotropic medications, including reactions that are sometimes fatal.
Join us as we explore:
Sex, Gender and Psychopharmacology
Sex and Gender: What’s the Difference?
Should differences between males and females guide prescribing practices or is it a type of sexual discrimination? This course is designed to teach you why biological differences are so critical to drug response and dangerous side effects. Did you know that certain drugs can reduce a woman’s contraceptive levels making her more likely to become pregnant?
Explore clinically grounded, sex-related issues including:
Psychopharmacology of Antipsychotics
This 3-hour course is designed to help the mental health provider working with psychotic patients. It explores the common symptom domains associated with schizophrenia and targets treatment beyond hallucinations and delusions. Through the liberal use of clinical vignettes, this course brings a very complicated condition into perspective. Students will learn about traditional and atypical antipsychotics and their side effect burdens. The psychobiosocial model is employed to explain the importance of utilising empirically supported psychotherapies as well as social interventions with this population, proving once again, that understanding each individual as a person rather than a set of symptoms is paramount regardless of the severity of the disease.
Treatment of Anxiety
This 3-hour course is designed to help the mental health provider working with anxious patients. It illustrates how the brain responds to real-life danger and to anxious thoughts in amazingly similar ways. The format uses clinical vignettes to highlight key points and to enhance real-world applications of the psychobiosocial model. Students will learn about the importance of psychological and social therapies in the treatment of anxiety. Just as importantly, they will learn which medications are likely to worsen anxiety and to work against the therapeutic process and why.
Treatment of Bipolar Disorders
During this 3-hour lecture students will refine their skills in the diagnosis of bipolar disorder, which is often difficult to determine because of the variant nature of its presentation. By advancing their skills in diagnosis and identifying side effects, mental health practitioners can be extremely helpful to medication managers treating this population. The prevalence of bipolar spectrum disorders is approximately 5%. These very serious and chronic mood disorders have significant morbidity and mortality. The course explores new diagnostic criteria in adults and adolescents, common co-occurring conditions, and specific pharmacologic treatment algorithms. Also discussed are strategies for relapse prevention and enhanced medication adherence. Finally, the course briefly covers important strategies for lifestyle management and adjunctive non-pharmacologic treatment approaches. During this course the student will learn:
Because children tend to respond in a generalized fashion to a host of biological and environmental stressors, formulation of clear diagnoses is a formidable task. This 3-hour course will present a model for understanding children's emotional disorders based upon a trimodel analysis of:
This 3-hour course addresses one of the most rapidly growing populations on the planet—the elderly. The World Health Organization reports that for the first time in human history, the elderly outnumber the young (children under five). This course reviews the physical changes associated with the aging process and how they influence medication effects and side effects. It uses case studies to distinguish between “the 3-D’s” - delirium, depression and dementia. The course reviews pharmacological and empirically supported nonpharmacological interventions for these conditions. The information is then integrated to assist the mental health professional in making informed decisions and recommendations regarding the unique health care needs of the elderly.
Treatment of Depression
In this 3-hour lecture the diagnosis and treatment of the spectrum of depressive disorders are studied from an evidence-based, psychobiosocial perspective. Current understanding of the mechanism of action of antidepressants as well as efficacy related to the severity of the disorder are presented and critically analyzed. Several case studies are presented that compare and contrast the techniques for treating depressive disorders.
Substance Abuse & Addiction
This 3-hour lecture takes a sweeping view of substance abuse problems throughout the world. The neuro-mechanisms of addiction are presented, followed by a review of the geographic, economic, and social presses leading to particular addictions in various parts of the world. Treatments based upon this holistic understanding are discussed.
Treating Dual Diagnosis Patients
This course is an in depth study of psychopharmacology variables that need to be considered when treating dual diagnosis patients. Disease states and psychological disorders sharing common neuropathways are reviewed. Special cautions in prescribing psychotropics with this population are highlighted.
Practical Modules-1 CE Unit
Case Study: Social Justice and the Underserved
This case study is designed to deepen the student's understanding of how their efforts as mental health workers can assist their patients in breaking personal and social barriers that have impeded them. Four separate case studies exemplify how mental health workers who integrate understanding of psychopharmacology, in conjunction with the psychological and social interventions, are warriors for social justice.
Case Study: Geriatric
This case study explores the complexity of treating elderly patients. Advanced age changes the dynamics of drug metabolism, as well as lifelong and immediate care issues. This case study highlights how gratifying this holistic work is to elderly patients and their mental health workers.
Case Study: Psychosis
This case study focuses on the integration of medication management with behavioral social and family interventions. It is the case of a young man who had initially received inadequate care for his psychotic disorder. Important principles in the management of psychosis are explained to help guide the mental health professional in treating this often misunderstood population.
Case Study: Bipolar
This case study of a bipolar patient demonstrates how a mental health worker thinks through and tests out possible diagnoses. It explores the process of selecting and moving through various therapeutic interventions using the psychobiosocial model of care. The case highlights important aspects of treating bipolar patients.
Free Mini-Course (non-CE)