Older adults with complex needs reside in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) and are cared for by nurses and social workers with limited geriatrics education. We describe the pilot phase of an educational model using the Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes (ECHO) platform to teach geriatrics principles to SNF staff. Twenty-five unique participants from 7 total facilities enrolled, with twenty-two participants completing both the pre/post surveys. Statistically significant improvement was seen in participants' self-efficacy to treat patients with dementia, educate patients about hospice and palliative medicine options, and assess and manage infections in older adults. The two largest barriers participants identified in making changes after the series were the time pressures of caring for complex geriatric patients and staff available to assist with social support needs of older adults. ECHO-Chicago's Geriatrics SNF pilot series is innovative and shows promise to provide geriatrics education for the SNF workforce.
Keywords: Geriatrics; Nursing education; Nursing home; Tele-education.
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