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Depression and an Older Adult Teaching Module

This teaching video illustrates an initial screening for depression with an older man and explores somatic symptoms, depressed mood, frustration, and suicidal ideation. Screening tools used are the Geriatric Depression Scale-Short Form and suicide risk assessment questions. Issues associated with depression in the context of age-related social and health changes, and areas where somatic complaints accompany depressed mood are explored. Teaching points, evaluation tools, discussion questions, and resources are offered. A script of the video is provided.

Advanced Competencies Addressed in This Module:

  1. Ability to engage, maintain rapport, and sustain effective working relationships with a wide range of older adults including those with behavior problems, mental illness, or dementia.
  2. Understanding of how to conduct a geriatric assessment of psychosocial factors.
  3. Understanding of how to conduct differential mental health diagnosis regarding depression using diagnostic tools that are appropriate for use with older adults.
  4. How to intervene to assist individuals and families dealing with complex end-of-life issues regarding death, dying, bereavement, and loss.
  5. Application of concepts, theories, and research of biological, psychological, and social aging to social work assessment and intervention.
  6. Understanding of the effects and interactions of multiple chronic conditions, medication, nutrition, and sudden or ongoing causes of changes in cognitive states and functional capacity.
  7. Ability to relate social work perspectives and theories to practice with older adults (e.g., person-in-environment).

More On This

Depression and an Older Adult Interview Script
 
Depression and an Older Adult Instructor's Guide

Depression and an Older Adult - Video

This video illustrates an initial screening for depression with an older man. The client has been experiencing chest pain and has been through a series of medical tests that are negative. His physician has referred him to the social work agency for evaluation and counseling. The interview takes place in the social worker's office. The client voices concerns about coming to see a social worker. He has recently retired, as he and his wife had planned, after a successful business career. His wife's sudden and progressive illness dashed their expectations for retirement and put him into the unfamiliar role of caregiver. The client is in his mid sixties and has made a planned transition into retirement, but an unplanned and unexpected transition to a caregiver. The video is divided into three sections: Interview; Geriatric Depression Scale Questions; and questions about suicidal ideation and planning.

Duration: 1028 seconds