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Sometimes referred to as the “crossroads of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease” Lewy Body Dementia is now the second-most common cause of dementia. People who have LBD struggle to find good care because their symptoms are challenging, characterized by great fluctuations in alertness and complex behaviors.  This course will help families and professionals understand the clinical indicators to seek appropriate diagnosis (and why that is important); common behavioral manifestations, strategies to manage them, and resources to support the patient and family.

outlineCourse Outline

Unit 1
An Introduction to LBD
-Symptoms, stages, and disease characteristics
-Differential diagnosis
-Services and supports

Unit 2
Living with LBD
-Depression, delirium, and dementia
-Adapting to functional challenges
-Rights and responsibilities for care planning

Unit 3    
Managing Behavioral Changes
-Hallucinations, delusions, and resistance to care
-Medications which help, medications which hurt
-Advocating and making informed decisions

Unit 4    
Caring for the Caregiver
-Stages of caregiving: from denial to advocate
-Options for caregiver wellness
-Legal, financial, and long term care planning
-When more care is needed - helping the caregiver make the decision

Question MarkAbout online learning

Online learning is a fun, enjoyable and very productive way to learn. Millions of people are learning online each year. You will engage with the instructor and other participants. You will get to know your instructor and other participants. You may make friends. It’s easy. It’s fun.

GearsHow the Course Works

It is easy to participate in your online course. After you register, you will be given a web address to go to get into your online classroom. You will have a password and use your email address and password to gain access.

Once inside the online classroom, here’s what you can expect.

CalendarParticipate when you want

You can participate any time of day or evening. The online classroom is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
There are no live real-time requirements or meetings. You decide when you participate.
For the best learning, participants should log into the course on 2-3 different days of the week.

ChecklistWhat you will do

For each Unit, you will:

  • Read the print readings (about 20 pages a week)
  • Have the option of accessing the online readings
  • Listen to the audio presentation for the Unit and view the slides
  • Have the option of taking a self-quiz to see how much you have learned
  • Engage in written online discussion with your instructor and other participants

For best learning, you should make one or more comments at 2-3 different times each week.
The content (readings, audio lectures, slides) and self quizzes are accessible for the entire course, so you can work ahead, or go back and review again, at your convenience.


The Discussion for each Unit lasts one week. All comments are made in writing and can be made at any time of the day or night.

Your instructor will log into the Discussion area at least once a day and answer questions, make comments, and respond to comments by you and the other participants.

We encourage you to make 2-3 comments each week to maximize your learning and enjoyment of the course.

It’s easy. It’s fun.

Next offering(s):
-Next session coming soon-


Ave. hours 16, 1.6 CEUs/ILUs

About Your Instructor

Pamela K. Atwood, MA, CDP, QDCP, CLL, is Director of Life Enrichment & Dementia Care at Hebrew Health Care, Inc., of West Hartford, Connecticut.

Pamela Atwood has worked with older adults professionally for more than 20 years, and in 2001 earned a Master's Degree in Gerontology and Human Development from Saint Joseph College in West Hartford. She is accredited through the National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners and is recognized as a Qualified Dementia Care Provider by the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. 

Ms. Atwood is also an adjunct faculty member of the gerontology program at Saint Joseph College in West Hartford.  Before joining Hebrew Health Care, she was the director of programs for the local chapter of the Alzheimer's Association. She also has many years of experience as a community case manager and worked in several skilled nursing facilities.

Directional ArrowsCourse Objectives

  • To provide an understanding of Lewy Body Dementia for health advocates
  • To describe the stages of LBD and identify common misdiagnosis
  • To provide standardized approaches for care of persons with LBD
  • To discuss the influence of family dynamics, finances and long-term care options
  • To provide information on medication options for persons with Lewy Body Dementia
  • To explore the stages of caregiving and how they evlove over time

Puzzle PiecesCourse Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, you will:

  • Describe the major symtoms and characteristics of the disease
  • List alternate diagnosis that many people with LBD are given
  • Understand the functional challenges that a person with LBD faces
  • Make informed decisions on behalf of people with LBD
  • Identify different strategies to assist people with LBD who are resitant to care
  • Understnad the stages of caregiving and how they evolve
  • Be prepared to assist caregivers make the decision to bring in further care
Completion Requirements