This interactive online course helps you identify and use effective lifestyle interventions for patients with severe psychiatric illnesses. This includes psychosis, bipolar disorder and severe depression.

Patients with these complex mental health conditions are at high risk for diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, and more. They also have high rates of mortality, medical visits, admissions, and treatment complications.

This course includes in-depth guidance so you can define healthy living for these patients and help them change behaviors. It enhances your clinical skills to help them make and maintain healthy choices that reduce their risks. Course content covers nutritional standards, mindfulness, exercise guidelines, sleep strategies, realistic goal setting, and using motivational interviewing and other techniques to enhance adherence. This is ideal for health professionals in psychiatry, primary care, physical therapy, nursing and more.

Our course director is Louisa Sylvia, PhD, author of The Wellness Workbook for Bipolar Disorder: Your Guide to Getting Healthy and Improving Your Mood.

The course includes an array of resources, videos and other materials to guide you through your learning experience. All content and assignments can be completed whenever your schedule allows. Weekly call-in times allow faculty to hear and respond to your questions directly. An interactive discussion board lets you post your own questions and interact with peers from across the United States and around the world. Plus, the course is accessible via desktop, laptop, smartphone or tablet.

Course materials are available beginning on April 3, 2017, and all online course work must be completed by May 8, 2017.

Learning Objectives

At the end of this program, participants will be able to:

  • Recognize the importance of making lifestyle changes for psychiatric patients.
  • Define healthy living for psychiatric patients.
  • Review strategies to help psychiatric patients create a healthier lifestyle.
  • Discuss the challenges of making lifestyle changes in psychiatric patients and how to overcome them.


Participants must complete each week sequentially and while completing all components of each week to receive credit, including:

  • Activity Overview
  • Video Lecture
  • Reading and Resources (required and optional)
  • Q&A with Faculty
  • Discussion Board
  • Case Assessment

Session 1


Session Goals:

  • Discuss the course structure and outline new treatments
  • Summarize the rationale for psychiatric patients to make a healthy lifestyle
  • Define healthy living for psychiatric patients
  • Discuss the importance of realistic goal setting with patients

Session 2


Session Goals:

  • Review the "ChooseMyPlate" nutritional standards
  • Discuss the importance of portion control
  • Employ skills to help psychiatric patients make healthier food choices and reduce their portion sizes

Session 3


Session Goals:

  • Review the national guidelines for physical activity and their importance
  • Describe how they think about exercise (it is lifestyle activity!)
  • Identify the role of mindfulness in making healthy choices
  • Discuss the importance of using rewards to change behavior

Session 4

Other Areas of Healthy Living

Session Goals:

  • Discuss the role of sleep in psychiatric illness and sleep strategies
  • Review effective communication strategies and importance of social support
  • Discuss using mindfulness to reduce impulsive decision-making (e.g., using substances, spending too much, making risky/unhealthy choices)
  • Demonstrate creating a Wellness Plan


  • Associate Director of Psychology Bipolar Clinic and Research Program
    Massachusetts General Hospital

    Director of Resilient Warrior Program,
    Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program

    Assistant Professor of Psychology
    Harvard Medical School

Target Audience

This program is intended for:

  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychologists
  • General and Family Practice Physicians
  • Physician Assistants
  • Nurses
  • Social Workers
  • Residents
  • Fellows


Physicians and Doctoral-level Professionals: $395.00
Other Professionals: $295.00

Q&A with Faculty

  • Week 1 - Friday, April 7 - 11:30am-12pm - Louisa Sylvia, PhD
  • Week 2 - Friday, April 14 - 11:30am-12pm - Louisa Sylvia, PhD
  • Week 3 - Friday, April 21 - 11:30am-12pm - Louisa Sylvia, PhD
  • Week 4 - Friday, April 28 - 11:30am-12pm - Louisa Sylvia, PhD

Cancellation Policy

Refunds will be issued for cancellation requests made during the first week of the course, but an administrative fee of $25.00 will be deducted from your refund. Cancellation requests made during the second week will receive a credit toward a future offering of the same course. No refunds or credits will be granted after April 17, 2017.

Additional Online Courses

We offer several online courses on cognitive behavioral therapy that complement the course you are currently viewing.

View our online CBT course offerings

CME Information

Release Date: April 3, 2017
Expiration Date: May 8, 2017






AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of McLean Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital. McLean Hospital is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

McLean Hospital designates this enduring material for a maximum of 10.75 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


Psychologists CE Credit

The Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Psychiatry
is approved by the American
Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Psychiatry maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

This offering meets the criteria for 10.75 continuing education credits for psychologists.


Nursing Contact Hours

Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 13,
sections 13, 14, 14A, 15, and 15D and Chapter 112, sections 74 through 81C authorize the Board of Registration in Nursing to regulate nursing practice and education.

This program meets the requirements of the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Nursing at (244 CMR 5.00) for 10.75 contact hours of nursing continuing education credit.Advance practice nurses, please note: Educational activities which meet the requirements of the ACCME (such as this activity) count towards 50% of the nursing requirement for ANCC accreditation.


Social Work CE Credit Hours

The Collaborative of NASW, Boston College, and Simmons College Schools of Social Work authorizes social work continuing education credits for courses, workshops, and educational programs that meet the criteria outlined in 258 CMR of the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Social Workers.

Application for social work continuing education credits has been submitted. Please contactus at or 1-866-644-7792 for the status of social work CE accreditation.



Other Professions

Other Providers can claim a Participation Certificate upon successful completion of this course.

Participation Certificates will specify the title, location, type of activity, date of activity, and number of AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM associated with the activity. Providers should check with their regulatory agencies to determine ways in which AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM may or may not fulfill continuing education requirements. Providers should also consider saving copies of brochures, agenda, and other supporting documents.


David H. Rubin, MD,reviewer
Jane Pimental, MPH
Susan Sprich, PhD
Louisa Sylvia, PhD,course cirector

Disclosure Information

In accord with the disclosure policy of McLean Hospital as well as guidelines set forth by the Accreditation Council on Continuing Medical Education, all people in control of educational content, including speakers, course directors, planners, and reviewers, have been asked to disclose all relevant financial relationships with commercial interests of both themselves and their spouses/partners over the past 12 months, as defined below:

Commercial Interest

The ACCME defines a "commercial interest" as any entity producing, marketing, re-selling, or distributing health care goods or services, used on, or consumed by, patients. The ACCME does not consider providers of clinical service directly to patients to be commercial interests. For more information, visit

Financial relationships

Financial relationships are those relationships in which the individual benefits by receiving a salary, royalty, intellectual property rights, consulting fee, honoraria, ownership interest (e.g., stocks, stock options or other ownership interest, excluding diversified mutual funds), or other financial benefit. Financial benefits are usually associated with roles such as employment, management position, independent contractor (including contracted research), consulting, speaking and teaching, membership on advisory committees or review panels, board membership, and other activities from which remuneration is received, or expected. ACCME considers relationships of the person involved in the CME activity to include financial relationships of a spouse or partner.

Relevant financial relationships

ACCME focuses on financial relationships with commercial interests in the 12-month period preceding the time that the individual is being asked to assume a role controlling content of the CME activity. ACCME has not set a minimal dollar amount for relationships to be significant. Inherent in any amount is the incentive to maintain or increase the value of the relationship. The ACCME defines "'relevant' financial relationships" as financial relationships in any amount occurring within the past 12 months that create a conflict of interest.

Conflict of Interest

Circumstances create a conflict of interest when an individual has an opportunity to affect CME content about products or services of a commercial interest with which he/she has a financial relationship.

The following planners, speakers, and content reviewers, on behalf of themselves and their spouse or partner, have reported financial relationships with an entity producing, marketing, re-selling, or distributing health care goods or services (relevant to the content of this activity) consumed by, or used on, patients:

Louisa Sylvia, PhD,course cirector
Consultant: Bracket
Royalties: New Harbinger

Susan Sprich, PhD
Royalties: Oxford University Press (for co-authoring treatment manual and client workbook), Springer (for editing book)

All other individuals including course directors, planners, reviewers, faculty, staff, etc., who are in a position to control the content of this educational activity have, on behalf of themselves and their spouse or partner, reported no financial relationships related to the content of this activity.

Hardware/Software Specifications

This internet-based CME activity is best experienced using Internet Explorer 8+, Mozilla Firefox 3+, Safari 4+. This Web site requires that JavaScript and session cookies be enabled. Certain activities may require additional software to view multimedia, presentation, or printable versions of the content. These activities will be marked as such and will provide links to the required software. That software may be: Adobe Flash, Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft PowerPoint, and Windows Media Player.

Optimal System Configuration

Flash Player: Adobe Flash Player 10.1+
Browser: Firefox 3+, Internet Explorer 8.0+, Safari 4.0+, or Google Chrome 7.0+
Operating System: Windows XP+ or Mac OS X 10.4+
Internet Connection: 1 Mbps or higher

Minimum Requirements

Windows PC: 500-MHz Pentium II; Windows XP or higher; 128 MB RAM; Video Card at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card at least 16-bit; Macromedia Flash Player 10 or higher, audio playback with speakers for programs with video content; Firefox 1.1+, Internet Explorer 7.0+, Safari 1.0+, Google Chrome, or Opera
Macintosh: Mac OS X 10.3 or higher with latest updates installed; 1.83MHz Intel Core Duo or faster; RAM: 128MB or more; Video Card: at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card: at least 16-bit

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