Supporting Older Adults with Substance Use Disorders

Event Start Date: May 16, 2018 - 4:00 PM EDT
Event End Date: May 16, 2018 - 5:30 PM EDT

Supporting documents such as webinar slides, transcript, and additional resources are available to download by scrolling to the attachments section below.


This webinar is available as podcasts on SoundCloud and iTunes.

Substance use disorders (SUD) are a significant public health concern for the growing population of older adults. By 2020, the number of older adults with SUD in the United States is expected to rise from 2.8 million in 2002-2006 to 5.7 million.1 Further, beneficiaries dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid experience co-occurring SUD and chronic pain at rates nearly twice as high as beneficiaries with Medicare only,2 putting dually eligible beneficiaries at increased risk. 

In order to empower providers and health plans to better care for older adults with SUD, this webinar describes SUD screening tools, how to effectively diagnose SUD, and available treatment resources. Speakers also discuss the need for care coordination for older adults affected by SUD.

By the end of this webinar, participants should be able to:

  1. Define the types of SUD common in older adults. 
  2. Recognize the epidemiology and magnitude of SUD among older adults.
  3. Identify the potential benefits and risks of substance use, and how it may lead to SUD.
  4. Define the association between SUD and co-morbid mental health issues.
  5. Recognize the various treatment options and overall need for care coordination.

Featured Speakers:

  • David Oslin, MD, Chief of Behavioral Health, Philadelphia VAMC, Professor, University of Pennsylvania
  • Jessica Gregg, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Oregon Health and Science University School of Medicine
  • Ann Giazzoni, LCSW, Program Manager, Physical and Behavioral Health Integration, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Insurance Services Division
  • Carol Prudhomme, Consumer

Intended Audience:

This webinar is intended for a wide range of stakeholders – providers and health care professionals (such as physicians, psychologists, nurses, social workers, certified prevention specialists, addiction counselors), and front-line staff at social service agencies, MMPs, D-SNPs, managed long-term services and supports programs, and consumer organizations.


1 Wu, L. T., & Blazer, D. G. (2011). Illicit and nonmedical drug use among older adults: A review. Journal of Aging and Health, 23(3), 481–504. doi:10.1177/0898264310386224.

2 Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office. (2016). [Memo] Opportunities for MMPs, PACE organizations, and D-SNPs to Prevent, Identify, and Treat Opioid Addiction or Misuse among Medicare-Medicaid Dually Beneficiaries. Retrieved from