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New Certification Program for Caregivers of Persons Living With Dementia


The Alzheimer's Association has launched a new training program with certification exam aimed at educating care professionals in long-term and community-based care settings—including in-home care—on current evidence-based, person-centered practices to care for people living with dementia.

The Alzheimer's Association Person-Centered Dementia Care Training Program with essentiALZ Exam offers a new opportunity for care professionals to receive high-quality care training and certification based on the nationally-recognized Dementia Care Practice Recommendations, a set of evidence-based, person-centered dementia care practices to define quality care across all care settings and throughout the course of the disease.

"The Alzheimer's Association Person-Centered Dementia Care Training Program with essentialALZ Exam is built around evidence-based practices that promote personalized, person-centered, quality dementia care," said Beth Kallmyer, MSW, vice president of care and support at the Alzheimer's Association. "These recommendations in daily care can transform and enhance the care professionals are providing to people living with dementia."


The three-hour online training program is a self-paced curriculum for new and experienced care professionals. The program features five topic areas from the Dementia Care Practice Recommendations, which intersect most directly with daily care, including:

• Alzheimer's disease and dementia
• Person-centered care
• Assessment and care planning
• Activities of daily living
• Dementia-related behaviors and communication

The purchase of the Person-Centered Dementia Care Training Program includes access to essentiALZ, an individual certification exam developed based on the practices put forth in the Dementia Care Practice Recommendations that demonstrate knowledge of quality care dementia practices. With successful completion of the training program, care professionals are eligible to take the exam. Individuals who pass the exam are certified in essentiALZ for two years, demonstrating their commitment and knowledge of providing personalized, person-centered, quality dementia care.

It is estimated that nearly 70% of older adults with Alzheimer's or other dementias reside in the community (outside a hospital or clinical setting). About 26% of these individuals live alone, but the remainder receives care from family members, unpaid caregivers, and community-based and residential care providers. By age 80, 75% of people with Alzheimer's dementia are admitted to a nursing home.

As the number of Americans living with Alzheimer's and other dementias grows, it's more important than ever for care professionals to implement the latest approaches to quality care. High-quality dementia care training can lead to an improvement in communication between caregivers and individuals living with dementia, a reduction in dementia-related behaviors and an increase in job satisfaction and staff retention.


According to the 2021 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures report, more than 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's disease today. It is a leading cause of death in the United States. The number of Americans living with Alzheimer's is projected to reach nearly 13 million by 2050, unless more effective treatments are advanced.

Informed by leading dementia researchers and practitioners, the Alzheimer's Association offers a comprehensive suite of flexible options for providers and individuals to implement quality care for people living with Alzheimer's and other dementia.

More information on the Person-Centered Dementia Care Training Program with essentiALZ exam is available here.


“New Certification Program for Caregivers of Persons Living With Dementia.” HomeCare Magazine, 25 Mar. 2021, www.homecaremag.com/news/new-certification-program-caregivers-persons-living-dementia.


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3/25/2021 9:27 PM
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