This six-week, self-paced, asyncronous course focuses on the basic pharmacology of mental health problems and substance use disorders. It is for frontline workers, care providers, case managers and clinicians working in mental health and substance use programs. Topic areas covered include pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, how neurotransmitters work, and the effects of psychiatric medications and substance use on the brain. We suggest participants set aside up to four hours per week to complete the weekly modules of this self-directed course. An expert pharmacist is available in the online discussion forum to respond to posted questions. Requirements of the course:
- pre-course evaluation
- post an introduction in the introduction discussion forum
- activities and quizzes in each module
- post-course evaluation
• Identify basic neurobiological mechanisms.
• Identify the relationship between medication management and psychiatric disorders.
• Describe the four basic concepts of pharmacokinetics.
• Describe the four basic concepts of pharmacodynamics.
• Explain the mechanisms of drug action in the brain.
• Discuss the management of common medication side-effects.
• Compare three pharmacological approaches to treating substance use problems.
This course can be taken alone; however, it qualifies as an elective for the Concurrent Disorders Certificate Program.
Electives must be taken within a four-year period after completing the core course; any courses taken prior to the core program will not count toward the certificate. Participants will need to either re-take those courses or select electives that they have not previously taken.
The Concurrent Disorders Core Course must be taken first; then you will need to complete only two electives (listed below):
- Collaborating with Families Affected by Concurrent Disorders
- Interactions Between Psychiatric Medications and Substances of Abuse
- Legal Issues in Mental Health Care in Ontario
- Motivational Interviewing Introduction
- Recovery-Oriented Approach
This online course requires you to use an internet browser, but the system does not support Microsoft Internet Explorer. For more details, please read the browser and compatibility support page.
Certification and Accreditation
- Royal College Maintenance of Certification Section 1: 19.0 hours
- This course counts for 19.0 learning hours
Affiliations and Partnerships
This course was developed in collaboration with the Hamilton Health Sciences.
Please review the cancelation policy.