CORVALLIS - Oregon State University's 22nd annual gerontology conference will be held April 14-15 at LaSells Stewart Center in Corvallis.

The conference is intended for professionals in the field, including community service providers, primary care physicians, nurse practitioners, nursing facility staff, social workers, psychologists, foster care providers, and others who work with older adults.

Presentations at the conference will explore ways to enhance the quality of life for the elderly, according to Sally Bowman, Oregon State University Extension family development specialist.

The keynote speaker is Laura Carstensen, whose research on social interaction in later life casts new light on how older people manage their lives. She is the director of the Institute for Research on Women and Gender at Stanford University and editor of "The Practical Handbook of Clinical Psychology." The title of her talk is "Taking Time Seriously in Lifespan Development."

The conference also features 25 workshops. Of special note is one by Cameron Camp of the Myers Research Institute, Cleveland, Ohio, who will demonstrate how Montessori principles of child development have been successfully adapted for dementia patients in long-term care facilities.

Other workshop topics include exercise for the elderly, Alzheimer's care, automobiles and driving, housing design for independent living, and evaluation of programs and services for seniors.

The Oregon Geriatric Education Center is sponsoring a number of workshops on health issues related to the elderly, including mental health. Topics to be addressed include pain management, use of antidepressants, immunological processes and inpatient psychiatric units.

Presenters at the workshop include faculty from OSU, the University of Oregon, Portland State University, and Oregon Health Sciences University, as well as staff from federal, state, county and non-profit agencies and hospitals.

Registration for the conference is $100 if received by March 30, $120 after that date. Continuing education credits are available for an additional fee.

Registration forms and information about the conference are available from county offices of the OSU Extension Service or from Pat Mohr, conference coordinator, LaSells Stewart Center, Corvallis, OR 97331-3101 telephone 541-737-6443.

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Sally Bowman, 541-737-1020