Assessing Decisional Capacity

The 21st century is bringing about vast changes in the demographics of the United States. Notably, the population is aging at a rapid rate, and incidence of chronic illness and dementia is increasing, the disability population is aging, the nature of medical choices is changing due to evolving medical technology, and health care delivery systems are becoming increasingly complex. These trends bring health care clinicians up starkly against a growing challenge:

The Rising Tide of Patients With Diminished Decisional Capacity

The proposed training is open to all health care professionals and disciplines.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this activity, participants will be able to:

  • Determine the need to evaluate your patients' capacities
  • List the 10 key tenets of capacity assessment principles and practices
  • Evaluate a patient following the specified process
  • Identify different capacities and situations
  • Assess when to conduct an evaluation and when to refer
  • Describe the process of working with courts in guardianship proceedings

 Fee Schedule and Course Components

  • $25 for Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits, Continuing Nursing Education (CNE) credits, Continuing Education Units (CEU) or a Certificate of Completion

This course is split into six modules and is expected to take no longer than four hours to complete. You do not need to complete the entire course in one sitting. You will be able to log off and then log back on. There is a brief post-test (about five questions) at the end of each module. A score of 80 percent on each module quiz is required to receive continuing education credit. A downloadable curriculum is available at no extra fee to each registrant of the course. A downloadable glossary and a resource page are also available.

The Retirement Research Foundation generously supported the development of this curriculum.

For more information, please contact Michelle Newman at If you would like to enroll, please complete the registration form.

In support of Patient Care, Rush University Medical Center is accredited by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing education for the health care team.

Rush University Medical Center designates this enduring material activity for a maximum of (4) AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s). Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

This activity is being presented without bias and without commercial support.

ANCC Credit Designation - Nurses

The maximum number of hours awarded for this CE activity is four contact hours.

Rush University is an approved provider for physical therapy (216.000272), occupational therapy, respiratory therapy, social work (159.001203), nutrition, speech-audiology and psychology by the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation. Rush University designates this enduring materials activity for (4) continuing education credit(s).