Health systems across the country are supporting their clinicians with just-in-time skills development to reduce crises, improve outcomes, and strengthen the quality of care for patients with serious illness.

CAPC member organizations have unlimited access to more than fifty online continuing education courses in skills needed to care for patients with serious illness.

Courses provide free continuing education credits for:

  • Physicians (including MOC points for ABIM-boarded physicians)
  • Advanced practice providers
  • Nurses
  • Social workers
  • Case managers

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Improve Outcomes

How can training help?

The number of people taking CAPC courses nearly doubled in the spring of 2020 as the pandemic took hold – that’s because clinicians were navigating tough conversations with patients and families, providing relief from symptoms, and supporting families who could not visit their loved ones face-to-face. CAPC’s COVID-19 Learning Pathways train clinicians in relevant skills for care in the COVID era.

Who to train, and recommended resources:

Access CAPC’s COVID-19 Learning Pathways for clinical education here – or browse CAPC’s COVID-19 toolkit for a suite of tools and planning resources.

How can training help?

To manage pain safely and appropriately, prescribers need training in:

  • Selecting the lowest-risk, highest-efficacy pain regimen for each patient
  • Evidence-based opioid prescribing guidelines, including monitoring and tapering
  • Assessing risk for substance use disorder
  • Mitigating the risk of opioid misuse

Who to train, and recommended resources:

All clinicians who care for patients with serious illness-related pain benefit from education in safe opioid prescribing and risk mitigation. This includes primary care, hospital medicine, oncology, cardiology, critical care, and others.

CAPC provides prescribing guidance for providers, and pain management education for nurses, social workers, and case managers.

How can training help?

Common but preventable risk factors lead to preventable crises, ED utilization and readmissions for older adults: Polypharmacy, anticholinergic burden, lack of caregiver support, lack of shared decision-making.

Who to train, and recommended resources:

Clinicians working in the following areas will benefit from CAPC’s training in how to provide age-friendly care:

  • Primary care
  • Surgery
  • Hospital Medicine
  • Outpatient specialists

How can training help?

Clinicians often do not receive pre-professional training in how to have difficult conversations with seriously ill patients and their families – but these conversations are needed to make sure that care plans reflect patients’ goals and values.

Who to train, and recommended resources:

All clinicians benefit from training in:

  • How to talk with patients about their goals for care
  • Having family meetings
  • Advance care planning
  • Discussing prognosis

Use CAPC’s Communication Skills courses here.

How can training help?

People with dementia have higher ED utilization, readmissions, and mortality rates than those without dementia – and clinicians often report feeling powerless to help. Train clinicians to support patients and families through dementia care best practices.

Who to train, and recommended resources:

CAPC’s Dementia Care Best Practices curriculum is particularly beneficial for clinicians working in:

  • Primary care
  • Emergency medicine
  • Hospital medicine
  • Case management

How can training help?

Nearly 80% of crisis ED visits and hospitalizations (excluding pneumonia) are due to exacerbations of chronic symptoms – with training, clinicians can manage these symptoms and improve care quality.

Who to train, and recommended resources:

Train outpatient specialists, primary care, and hospitalists to manage common symptoms using CAPC’s Symptom Management Designation curriculum.

Create a Common Culture of Care through Onboarding Protocols and Teaching Programs

What teaching hospitals are doing: Health systems use CAPC courses to embed communication and symptom management training in undergraduate, graduate, and fellowship teaching programs for physicians, nurses, pharmacists, and others.

Clerkship and residency directors choose the right courses for their trainees.

Self-study courses provide baseline education for all trainees – in many health systems, the specialty palliative care team reinforces this teaching through face-to-face workshops or rotations.

Standardize social work competencies in care for patients with serious illness.

Whether through onboarding requirements or systematic professional development, health systems train social workers in recognition of their key role supporting patients and families through the stressors of a serious illness, and connecting them to needed services.

CAPC’s Social Work Serious Illness Designation contains comprehensive education in key social work skills for the seriously ill patient population.

Standardize nursing competencies in care for patients with serious illness.

Whether through onboarding requirements or systematic professional development, health systems train nurses in recognition of their key role in communicating with patients and families, assessing for symptoms and other sources of distress, and supporting family caregivers.

CAPC’s Registered Nursing Serious Illness Designation contains comprehensive education in key nursing skills.

Provide standard onboarding training for all nurses – or get started by training your system’s critical care nurses.

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