Healthy Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias Education

Training and Support for Louisiana Physicians

The Healthy Aging and ADRD ECHO program with support from the Alzheimer’s Association, will allow providers to acquire new skills, competencies, and best practices in patient care related to risk reduction and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias that are seen as an aging issue and more commonly, recognized as a public health crisis. Dementia prevalence in Louisiana is on the rise for those 65 and older. Orleans Parish has the state’s highest rate of Alzheimer’s at 15.4%. Other parishes with high rates include Caddo, Bienville and Claiborne in northwest Louisiana and East Carroll and Tensas in the northeastern part of the state.

Well-Ahead Louisiana has partnered with a variety of specialists and subject matter experts to promote brain health in the aging community. The Louisiana Department of Health recognizes that Alzheimer’s and related dementias has a significant burden on those who have the condition as well as their families and caregivers. These diseases also takes a financial toll on families, and to our economy overall.

Alzheimer’s Disease in Louisiana

The scheduled ECHO clinics function like virtual grand rounds, combined with mentoring and patient case presentations. Spoke sites will present patient cases and subject-matter experts and participants will discuss and help determine the best treatment for the patient.


Who Can Participate

All clinicians and students in the community who work in underserved, primary care settings are invited to join as spoke participants on July 16, 2024. These monthly sessions are for all primary care providers, nurses, social workers, and clinical staff who would like to be a part of creating an age-friendly practice. Clinicians are able to obtain CEU credits for their participation.

Topics

  • Introduction to ECHO & Diseases Causing Dementia
  • Diet and Exercise’s Role in Dementia Prevention
  • Sleep Health
  • SDOH and Health Disparities
  • The Effects of Ageism as a Risk to Dementia
  • Dementia Risk and Chronic Disease
  • Women’s Brain Health: Menopause and Cognition 
  • Evaluation, Diagnosis, and Assessment in the Primary Care Office
  • Signs and Symptoms of Cognitive Impairment
  • Biomarkers and Clinical Significance
  • Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms
  • Non-pharmacological Behavioral Management Interventions
  • Emerging Treatments

Partnership

Louisiana Alzheimer’s Coalition

How to Join

Participants will access registration via the Well-Ahead website and sign up for our newest offered iECHO software provided by Project ECHO® at University of New Mexico for replicating partners.

CME credits

Participants will have an opportunity to receive one (1) AMA PRA approved CE credit based on professional availability at no cost. Credits are available to Well-Ahead Louisiana as a replicating partner of Project ECHO.

Meet the Hub Team

  • Elizabeth Disbrow, PhD

    Dr. Disbrow is a native of California and received PhD training in neuroscience at UC Davis, with postdoctoral training in radiology and brain imaging from UCSF.  She studied tactile processing for many years before focusing on age related neurodegenerative disease.  For the last 20 years she has examined the mechanisms subserving cognitive dysfunction in Parkinson’s disease as well as cognitive neurorehabilitation.  She moved to LSU Health Shreveport in 2013 and is now a Professor in the Department of Neurology.  Most recently she became interested in Alzheimer’s disease and is part of a team studying dementia pathophysiology in pursuit of a disease biomarker.  She is also part of a group studying dementia health care disparities in north Louisiana with the goal of improving diagnosis and care in the region.  She is a member of the Louisiana Alzheimer’s Coalition and national LEAD Coalition (Leaders Engaged on Alzheimer’s Disease) to contribute to the state and national strategic planning for Alzheimer’s and dementia care.  Her teaching experience includes directing the neuroscience and introductory statistics courses in the School of Graduate Studies.  She is also the founding Director of the LSU Health Shreveport Center for Brain Health, which she helped establish in 2018, and The Bridge, a community dementia resource center located at 851 Olive St.

  • Anne Foundas, MD, FAAN

    Anne L. Foundas, M.D., FAAN is a New Orleans native and board-certified neurologist who completed her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Wellesley College, her Medical Degree from the LSU School of Medicine in New Orleans, residency, and fellowship training in Neurology, and Cognitive and Behavioral Neurology at the University of Florida College of Medicine in Gainesville. Dr. Foundas began her academic career at the Tulane University School Of Medicine, followed by a position as Vice-Chair of Clinical Research at the LSU School of Medicine in New Orleans. She was the Chair of the Department of Neurology at the University Of Missouri in Kansas City before returning to Louisiana and her current position as Executive Director of the Brain Institute of Louisiana, Research Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at LSU in Baton Rouge and Managing Partner of NOLA Brain and Behavior. Dr. Foundas is an accomplished clinical researcher with over 200 scientific publications and an established record of research funding. Dr. Foundas’ clinical practice focuses on patients with cognitive disorders, and her clinical research program is designed to promote brain health through medical research and education.

  • Gina Rossi, LCSW-BACS, DCSW, MHSA

    Gina Rossi, LCSW-BACS,DCSW,MHSA is a graduate of Louisiana State University and St. Francis University.  She is a licensed clinical social worker in the Baton Rouge community for 35+ years. She has extensive experience in direct practice as a therapist and in programmatic and administrative roles, having developed treatment programs in the community and grant programs. She is contracted with various state and national organizations in work related to Alzheimer’s, caregiving and providing treatment and support. She is an adjunct instructor for LSU School of Social Work working with interns in the field and with students as an instructor.

    She has a private practice helping persons through challenging life transitions. Her style is an honest and direct approach helping clients formulate realistic objectives to reach their desired goals.

    Gina’s accomplishments and dedication have resulted in many awards and honors. Her work with interns led to her 2017 induction into the LSU Hall of Distinction as the “LSU Alumnae of Distinction” for The School of Social Work.

    She was the recipient of the 2018 “Public Servant of the Year” by the Governors Office. She was awarded the “Rosemary Award” from the Alzheimer’s Services of the Capital Area in 2018 for her contributions to develop and improve services for persons suffering from dementia and their caregivers. In March of 2024 Gina was awarded the Louisiana Social Worker of the Year by the National Association of Social Workers.

     Gina is a sought-after speaker and educator. She is  frequently invited to present on topics of mental health, communication, caregiver issues, and other life transitions. Her signature workshop  “Ageism: Call it Out” reflects on the destructive effects of ageism on persons beyond middle age and how we can take back our worth and dignity. She believes we all deserve life satisfaction in every phase of life. *Gina Rossi is also a retired Colonel (Veteran of Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom).

  • Wanda Spurlock, DNS, RN, GERO-BC, PMH-BC, CNE, FNGNA, ANEF, FGSA, FAAN

    A professor of nursing in the College of Nursing and Allied Health at Southern University and A&M College, Dr. Wanda Spurlock is recognized nationally as an expert in the care of older adults, especially those with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. In addition to holding board certifications in psychiatric and gerontological nursing practice, she is recognized as a Distinguished Gerontological Nurse Educator by the National Hartford Center of Gerontological Nursing Excellence and is a Certified Academic Nurse Educator through the National League for Nursing (NLN). Her experiences in dementia care range from direct nursing care to executive leadership positions in acute psychiatric and behavioral health facilities.

    Dr. Spurlock is a fellow in the NLN’s Academy of Nursing Education, the National Gerontological Nursing Association, the Gerontological Society of America, and the American Academy of Nursing, where she served as Chair of the Expert Panel on Aging.  She has received numerous awards including Distinguished and Outstanding Alumni Awards from Our Lady of the Lake (OLOL) College of Nursing (FranU), Southeastern Louisiana University (SELU), College of Nursing and Allied Health, and Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC). In addition to being selected as one of Eight Louisianans of the Year by Louisiana Life Magazine, she has been inducted into the Louisiana Nurses Association (LSNA) Hall of Fame and has received the Nurse Educator of the Year Award (LSNA). Through her work with the Louisiana Dementia Coalition, Dr. Spurlock has played a key role in the reduction in use of antipsychotic medications in nursing home residents with dementia.  She has traveled across the state educating nursing home staff on evidence-based non-pharmacological interventions as the front-line approach to managing behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia.

    Dr. Spurlock received a diploma in nursing (1976, OLOL School of Nursing), a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (1984, SELU), a Master’s in Nursing (1987, LSU Medical Center) and a Doctor of Nursing Science (2002, LSUHSC).

2024 Healthy Aging & ADRD ECHO Curriculum

Risk Reduction
Early Detection and Diagnosis
Treatment

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Accreditation

In support of improving patient care, this activity has been planned and implemented by the Bureau of Chronic Disease Prevention and Healthcare Access and Project ECHO. Project ECHO® is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.

AMA Designation Statement: Project ECHO® designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit TM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

ANCC Designation Statement: Project ECHO® designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 ANCC contact hour. Nursing contact hours will be awarded for successful completion of program components based upon documented attendance and completion of evaluation.

Social Work Accreditation: As a Jointly Accredited Organization, Project ECHO® is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved under this program. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. Project ECHO® maintains responsibility for this course. Social workers completing this course receive 1.0 continuing education credit.

Disclosure Statement: Project ECHO®, in compliance with the ACCME Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education, requires that anyone who is in a position to control the content of an educational activity disclose all relevant financial relationships they have had within the last 24 months with an ineligible company.

None of the planners and presenters for this educational activity have relevant financial relationship(s) to disclose with ineligible companies whose primary business is producing, marketing, selling, re-selling, or distributing healthcare products used by or on patients.

The following planners / presenters listed below have disclosed that they have a relevant financial relationship with an ineligible company: Consultant, Pfizer

All of the relevant financial relationships listed for this individual have been mitigated.