Drug Therapy in Older Adults


Duration: 30 minutes
Format: Video Stream & pdfs

Continuing Education Credits Available for the Following Disciplines:
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Polypharmacy and adverse drug events are common in older adults and occur across care settings. Participate in this module to learn about polypharmacy consequences in older adults, practice implications of non-adherence and polypharmacy, common drug-drug and drug-food interactions, and common adverse drug events in older adults. Learn practical approaches to improving medication prescribing and monitoring.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this module, learners will be able to:

  1. Recognize the common consequences of inappropriate medication use and polypharmacy
  2. Describe the key principles of pharmacology and the effects of age on medication use
  3. Summarize the main approaches to improve medication prescribing and monitoring
  4. Describe a stepwise approach to integrating into practice a process for prescribing and monitoring medications
  5. Identify provider and patient resources to support drug prescribing and monitoring

Michael Koronkowski, PharmD, CGP
Clinical Assistant Professor Department of Pharmacy Practice
College of Pharmacy
Co-Investigator, ENGAGE-IL University of Illinois at Chicago

Joseph T. Hanlon, PharmD, MS

Expert Interviewee
Todd Semla, MS, PharmD, BCPS, FCCP, AGSF Clinical Assistant Professor
Department of Pharmacy Practice College of Pharmacy
Co-Investigator, ENGAGE-IL University of Illinois at Chicago

Author’s Bio:
Dr. Michael J. Koronkowski received his B.S. in Pharmacy in 1986 from Drake University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. His Pharm.D. degree was conferred in 1990 from Purdue University College of Pharmacy and Pharmacal Sciences. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency program at the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy in 1992 and a Fellowship in Geriatrics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in conjunction with Duke University and Glaxo Research Institute in 1994.

Dr. Koronkowski joined the faculty at the University of Illinois at Chicago in 1994 as a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice. Currently, he practices in Internal Medicine/Geriatrics as a Clinical Pharmacy Practitioner at the University of Illinois Hospital and Health System.  His research interest include: geriatric pharmacotherapy management, adverse drug reactions, medication safety, post-acute care transitions, and evidence-based interdisciplinary practice models. Current research program funding is ongoing through the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA), Chicago Department of Family Support Services, Senior Services, White Crane Wellness Center, Age Options-Area Agency on Aging targeting community-based senior wellness and the Department of Health and Human Services, Health Related Services Administration (DHHS-HRSA) Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Programs entitled ENGAGE-IL and CATCH-ON targeting Older Adults with Multiple Chronic Conditions in Primary Care.

Joseph T. Hanlon, PharmD, MS

Contributor’s Bio
Dr. Joseph T. Hanlon is a Professor of Geriatric Medicine, Pharmacy and Epidemiology at the University of Pittsburgh and is a clinical pharmacist at the Pittsburgh VA. Dr. Hanlon has been a geriatric clinical pharmacist in hospital, nursing home and clinic settings since 1987. He has considerable experience teaching/lecturing on geriatric pharmacotherapy topics for Schools of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy and Public Health, and has conducted research and published extensively over the past 30 years.

Expert Interviewee
Todd Semla, MS, PharmD, BCPS, FCCP, AGSF
Clinical Assistant Professor
Department of Pharmacy Practice
College of Pharmacy
Co-Investigator, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

Expert’s Bio
Dr. Todd is a National PBM Clinical Pharmacy Program Manager with the US Department of Veterans Affairs Pharmacy Benefits Management Service and an Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine, and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. He is a past President and Board Chair of the American Geriatrics Society and a past Chair of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy’s Geriatric Practice and Research Network.

Dr. Semla is an Associate/Section Editor for Drugs and Pharmacology for the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society and is on the Editorial Boards of the Annals of Pharmacotherapy, and The Annals of Long-Term Care,. He served on the Editorial Boards for the Pharmacotherapy Self-Assessment Program V and VI.  Dr. Semla was the Consulting Editor on Pharmacotherapy for the 5th and 6th editions of the Geriatrics Review Syllabus.

A leading expert on pharmacotherapy for older adults, Dr. Semla is a Board Certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist.  He is the recipient of numerous research grants and awards, and is the author or co-author of more than 80 scientific studies, reports, books, abstracts, and reviews.  

Valerie Gruss PhD, APN, CNP-BC
Clinical Assistant Professor
College of Nursing
Director, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

Memoona Hasnain MD, MHPE, PhD
Professor and Associate Department Head,
Faculty Development & Research

College of Medicine,
Department of Family Medicine
Co-Director, ENGAGE-IL
University of Illinois at Chicago

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This ENGAGE-IL learning activity fully complies with the legal requirements of the ADA and the rules and regulations thereof. Learners with special needs can make requests for accommodation at any time by sending e-mail to engageiluic@gmail.com.