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Sensory Impairment in Older Adults and Drug-Related Side Effects – Online Continuing Education (CE) Self-Study
By Shirley Cheung, BSc. Pharm, BCGP

This course is free for CPCAC members, and available for purchase by non-members. CPCAC members will be emailed their log in information. Non-members may purchase the course here.


1.     Describe the age-related changes that occur in the major senses: vision, hearing, smell and taste.
2.     Recognize the risks associated with sensory impairment and its impact on the older population.
3.     Identify medications that can cause or worsen sensory impairment.
4.     Describe the pharmacist’s role in preventing and managing drug-related sensory side effects.

Sensory impairment is currently one of the most common disabilities reported by the elderly in Canada. (1,3) Although most seniors consider it a normal sign of aging and do not pay much attention to it, it's prevalence will only continue to grow as the senior population (one of the fastest growing age groups in Canada) is projected to rise considerably. (1,2,4) In fact, by 2036, up to 10 million seniors will make up 23-25% of the total population. (4) As drug experts, pharmacists are in a unique position to help minimize the impact of sensory impairment in the older population.  By assessing for sensory side effects and optimizing drug therapy, pharmacists can reduce the burden of sensory impairment and help older adults achieve a better quality of life. 


    The accreditation period for this course has now passed. The course material is still available, however, not eligible for 1.25 CEU's.

    CCCEP Program #: 1474-2019-2717-I-P

    Accreditation Period: January 27, 2020 to January 27, 2021

    CEU’s: 1.25 (1.25 Contact Hours).

    This self-study activity is accredited by The Canadian Council on Continuing Education in Pharmacy as detailed above. 

    Quiz must be completed and passed at 70% grade or higher in order to see the link for the course evaluation. Once the course evaluation is completed, the certificate of attendance is attached in the Thank You message.

    Course must be completed in full by January 27, 2021 to receive continuing education certificate.


    Shirley Cheung is a clinical geriatric pharmacist based in Edmonton, Alberta. Although she started her pharmacy career in community practice, Shirley has been involved in geriatric pharmacy for over 15 years and obtained board certification in 2013. She currently practices at Safeway Continuing Care Pharmacy (Sobeys National Pharmacy Group), which provides pharmaceutical care to patients at all levels, from home care to long term care. An avid supporter of pharmacy education and expanded scope of practice for pharmacists, she also currently serves on the professional development committee for Alberta Pharmacists’ Association.

    Education is learning.

    We learn by reading, by inquiring, by asking questions and seeking out answers.  Learning is strengthened through our ability to communicate knowledge to others – we learn when we teach. 

    Whether you’re a recent graduate or have years of experiences, CPCAC is committed to providing you with knowledge you can use in your daily practice.  Education will include clinical topics and non-clinical topics (like quality of life and societal issues) related to caring for aging Canadians. 

    All members will be invited to participate in discussion boards, post interesting cases, post questions and provide literature updates that you feel may be useful to your peers; that is, you will be asked to teach. 
    ​Please join us as we chart a new direction in the continuing education of pharmacists caring for aging Canadians.

    About the Association

    CPCAC is a registered not-for-profit organization representing pharmacy professionals and other allied health partners caring for aging Canadians. Its focus is to empower and inspire innovation, integrity, excellence and empathy in its members through education, advocacy, research and collaboration.

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    Phone: 1-905-415-3917 ext. 224 & 233

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