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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

HHS ASPR Addressing the Needs of Older Adults in Disasters Web-Based Training

Elderly sitting at table with his medications The HHS/ASPR Addressing the Needs of Older Adults in Disasters web-based training (#1093802) is a free, publicly accessible course designed to improve public health and emergency medical responders’ capability to address the access and functional needs of community-dwelling older adults in disasters.

This course provides information, resources, tools, and strategies to help responders and address the
needs of older adults in common disaster situations including natural disasters and infectious disease outbreaks.

Visit TRAIN to take the 

Addressing the Needs of Older Adults in Disasters course

Why Focus on Older Adults?

The U.S. population is rapidly aging, and the U.S. Census Bureau projects that, by the year 2035, there will be more Americans who are 65 and older than there will be children under the age of 18. As of 2018, there were over 52 million adults ages 65 and older.

Older adults are a very diverse group, with varying life experiences and capabilities. In many cases, older adults demonstrate greater resilience in the face of disasters than younger populations.

However, since many disasters and emergencies disproportionately impact the older adult population, especially older adults ages 85 and older, it is important to understand how to identify and address the specific needs of older adults during a disaster or emergency.

What Will I Learn?

This course is divided into four modules, with case studies and real-life examples embedded throughout.

The course aims to support public health and medical responders in:

  1. Describing older adults’ diversity and various community supports that impact care considerations in a disaster

  2. Describing common conditions and challenges that increase older adults’ vulnerability in a disaster

  3. Identifying promising practices for assessing and addressing the needs of older adults in a disaster

  4. Identifying optimal response strategies for older adults incommon disaster situations

  5. Understanding how to apply lessons learned from real-worldexamples of addressing the needs of older adults in disasters

How to Launch the Course?

  1. Create a free account on

    For assistance, view the video tutorials or the"Setting Up Your TRAIN Account"

    Screenshot of the Train login page

  2. Search for course ID #1093008 in the TRAIN search bar.
    Screenshot of the search window on the website

  3. Launch the course and review all screens with audio and/or closed captioning. The course will take 1 hour, and can be paused and resumed at any time.

  4. To earn CEUs, you must achieve a score of at least 80% on the final exam; you will have three attempts to do so.

Note:  We are in the process of certifying this course. We will provide an update on the status of CEUs in the course description section on TRAIN.

How Can I Learn More?

Learn more about supporting individuals with access and functional needs in the HHS/ASPR Access and Functional Needs web-based training and the HHS emPOWER Program web-based training.

  • This page last reviewed: October 09, 2020