Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon

Course Number:
GRN 236
Course Title:
Dementia Care Practice
Credit Hours:
Lecture Hours:
Lecture/Lab Hours:
Lab Hours:
Special Fee:

Course Description

Uses a case study approach to advanced behavioral and cognitive care issues, based on realistic scenarios in a variety of settings. Includes assessing appropriate long term care options for memory care, problem solving, functional levels and other challenges, managing surveys, responding to deficiencies, problem solving repetitive incident reports, implementing fall prevention programs, and developing family education and support programs. Prerequisites: GRN 235. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes for the course

1. Use analysis and problem-solving skills in a variety of scenarios presenting complex advanced behavioral and cognitive care issues.
2. Apply best practices for dealing with challenging cognitive and behavioral issues, following care plans, providing appropriate documentation and working collaboratively with all stakeholders, including multidisciplinary teams, medical and healthcare professionals, family and community members.
3. Adhere to professional and ethical standards relevant to care provision.


Course Activities and Design

Course is organized around learning modules that include required reading, lecture, demonstration, resources, discussion, written assignments and other assessments, and where appropriate, team projects. Course can be offered inclass, online, or in other distributed learning formats.

Outcome Assessment Strategies

1. Participate in a team to develop a care plan for a hypothetical "new care client," identifying potential behavior and agitation triggers, and concisely describing (both verbally and in report form) the care client's family dynamic as it applies to the care client's care and well-being.
2. Participate in "on-the-spot" crisis management scenarios as an individual and as a member of a care team communicating clearly and kindly while interacting with agitated care clients, emotionally-fraught family and friends, and medical and healthcare professionals.
3. Demonstrate the ability to compromise in working to devise win-win solutions for an individual's care, showing  understanding and empathy for the key players when responding to a care client, their spouse or partner, and their adult children.
4. Participate in, and contribute to, all class and team discussions and activities.
5. Write all scheduled case reports and care plans.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

- Ethical care
- Dynamics of dementia care
- Best practices
- Person-centered care
- Family dynamics
- Emotions behind combative behaviors
- Importance of ongoing observation and assessment
- Subtle signs and symptoms
- Physical, emotional, and psychological concerns
- Collaborative stakeholder communication
- Use of humor to calm crises
- Defusion of agitation
- Redirection of aggressive behaviors