Mental Health First Aid

Mental Health First Aid for Older Adults

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) for Older Adults teaches people without a behavioral health background, how to identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders. This 8-hour training — which focuses on the unique experiences and needs of adults over the age of 65 — gives you the skills you need to reach out and provide initial support to someone who may be developing a mental health or substance use problem and help connect them to the appropriate care.

The course covers:

  • A discussion of life changes that occur in older adults.
  • A discussion of the specific risk factors faced by older adults, such as chronic health conditions.
  • How to discern the difference between talking about death and suicidal ideation.
  • A breakdown of psychosis, dementia and delirium.
  • How to communicate effectively with those who need help while using respectful language.
  • How to combat the stigma around substance-related problems in the older adult population.

Upon completion of the course, participants are certified as Mental Health First Aiders for three years. The training is appropriate for family, caretakers, employers, nursing staff and anyone who interacts with older adults.

group of adults holding signs

Register for a Course

All programs are 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (must attend both days)

Dates for new sessions will be added here soon. 


Unless otherwise noted, all sessions will be held at:

Bradley Learning Exchange
1 Catamore Boulevard
East Providence, RI 02914
Get directions

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Training Coordinator

  • Kimberly Lafountain, LMHC
    Behavioral Education Development Specialist, Department of Behavioral Education, Bradley Hospital
    MHFA Certified Instructor


  • Program fee: $109
  • For group reservations, contact Kim Lafountain, LMHC at 401-606-5759 or email
  • Online registration closes two days before the event date.
  • Phone registration: Please call the department of behavioral education at 401-606-5752.
  • To request reasonable accommodation for a disability, please contact the Rhode Island Hospital CME office at 401-444-4260.