Module Details

Module Code: NURS N8184
Full Title: Palliative Care
Valid From:: Semester 2 - 2018/19 ( February 2019 )
Language of Instruction:English
Duration: 1 Semester
Credits:: 10
Module Owner:: Ailish McArdle
Departments: Unknown
Module Description: The aims of this module are to facilitate Nurses, Midwives, Health and Social Care professionals (HSCPs) in the development of competency in palliative care delivery at a generalist level. It is envisaged that this will contribute to building palliative care capacity among Nurses and Midwives and H&SCP to respond confidently and in a timely manner to the palliative care needs of individuals and their families improving patient outcomes and family experience in any care setting.
Module Learning Outcome
On successful completion of this module the learner will be able to:
# Module Learning Outcome Description
MLO1 Competently apply the principles of palliative care to diverse client groups in a range of care setting.
MLO2 Demonstrate effective communication in the delivery of palliative care, supporting and enabling therapeutic relationships with individuals with life-limiting illnesses and their family ensuring their voice is central to their plan of care.
MLO3 Critically appraise professional, ethical and legal issues in the context of decision-making in palliative care.
MLO4 Critically discuss theory and research related to loss, grief and bereavement and the application of this knowledge and available resources to service users across the disciplines.
MLO5 Critically reflect upon and consider the importance of self-care and wellbeing for health care professionals.
Pre-requisite learning
Module Recommendations
This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is strongly recommended before enrolment in this module. You may enrol in this module if you have not acquired the recommended learning but you will have considerable difficulty in passing (i.e. achieving the learning outcomes of) the module. While the prior learning is expressed as named DkIT module(s) it also allows for learning (in another module or modules) which is equivalent to the learning specified in the named module(s).
No recommendations listed
Module Indicative Content
Principles of Palliative Care
UNDERSTANDING PALLIATIVE CARE: Definition of palliative care. Exploration of the philosophy and principles and levels of palliative care in a range of diverse care settings. OPTIMISING COMFORT AND QUALITY OF LIFE: The role of the nurse, midwife, health and social care professional in anticipating, and responding to the needs of people with life-limiting conditions and their families in a timely and proactive manner. Promotion of comfort and improved quality of life by effective assessment and management of needs, physical, psycho-social, emotional, and spiritual. Palliative care emergencies, criteria for referral to specialist palliative care. CARE PLANNING AND COLLABORATIVE PRACTICE: Interdisciplinary models, care pathways and care planning in palliative care. Disease trajectories, decision -making regarding goals of treatment and recognizing approach of end of life. Collaboration with families to provide information and advice to increase patients and families understanding of illness/ disease or life limiting condition.
Effective communication techniques.
Effective communication that supports therapeutic relationships with individuals and families. Principles of open disclosure and guidelines facilitating breaking bad news. Barriers, cultural and ethnic differences and challenges in communication and therapeutic relationships. Effective interdisciplinary communication and liason with community and primary services in care delivery.
Loss, grief and bereavement.
Theories of grief, loss and bereavement and the application of knowledge that supports individual and families suffering from loss and grief. Types of loss. Principles of good practice in relation to grief and loss. Spiritual, cultural and religious /faith needs of individuals and families. The impact of illness and diagnosis on individuals and families. Recognition of complicated grief and need for referral to specialist palliative care team /pastoral care/ counsellor. Recognise the personal impact of grief and one's own response and self-awareness.
Professional, Ethical and Legal Practice.
Professional, Ethical and Legal Practice: Overview of ethical theories and principles. Ethical issues pertaining to palliative care: The role of the health care provider in ethical decision making. Client autonomy in law and practice, the ethics of withholding and withdrawal of treatment. The ethics of confidentiality and privacy. Moral and ethical distress when caring for the dying person. PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE: Promoting Self Care and wellbeing. Support, education and training for professionals in relation to self care and promoting emotional resilience and positive mental health.
Module Assessment
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work100.00%
Module Special Regulation


Part Time On Campus

Course Work
Assessment Type Continuous Assessment % of Total Mark 90
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing n/a Learning Outcome 1,2,3,4,5
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
The Continuous Assessment will include a presentation and written assignment in which the learner will demonstrate the application of palliative care knowledge, principles and research to an area of their clinical practice.
Assessment Type Other % of Total Mark 0
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing n/a Learning Outcome 1,2,3,4,5
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
Engagement in e-Learning activities on alternative non-attending weeks through the programme
Assessment Type Other % of Total Mark 10
Marks Out Of 0 Pass Mark 0
Timing n/a Learning Outcome  
Duration in minutes 0
Assessment Description
Students are required to complete the HSE Palliative Care Needs Assessment Module
No Project
No Practical
No Final Examination
Reassessment Requirement
No repeat examination
Reassessment of this module will be offered solely on the basis of coursework and a repeat examination will not be offered.

DKIT reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload

This module has no Full Time On Campus workload.
Workload: Part Time On Campus
Workload Type Contact Type Workload Description Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload Hours
Lecturer Supervised Learning Contact Lecture, group work, class discussion, case scenarios & guest speakers from services. Every Second Week 3.00 6
Online Contact Contact Learners will be directed to a variety of online E-learning resources from e.g. aiihpc/IHF which support face-to-face teaching on alternative weeks. Every Second Week 3.00 6
Independent Study Non Contact Learners will engage in independant study relevant to the module. Once per semester 10.00 150
Total Weekly Learner Workload 16.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 6.00
Module Resources
Recommended Book Resources
  • Payne, S., Seymour, J.& Ingleton, C.. (2008), Palliative Care Nursing Principles and evidence for practice, 2nd.. McGraw Hill -Open University, UK, [ISBN: 978-0-335-221].
  • Winston, A., O’Connor, E., and O’Driscoll, S.. (2007), Bereavement: When someone close dies, Health Service Executive, Dublin.
  • McCarthy J, Donnelly M, Dooley D, Campbell L, Smith D. (2011), End-of-Life Care: Ethics and Law, Cork University Press.
  • Inglwton C. and Larkin P.. (2014), Palliative Care Nursing at a Glance, Wiley Publishers, London.
  • Costello, J. (editor). (2019), Adult Palliative Care for Nursing, Health and Social Care, Sage Publishing, Manchester UK.
  • Catherine Walshe, Nancy Preston, Bridget Johnston. (2018), Palliative Care Nursing: Principles and Evidence for Practice, 3rd.. [ISBN: ISBN: 9780335].
This module does not have any article/paper resources
Other Resources
  •, Palliative Care Competence Framework Steering Group.. (2014), Palliative Care Competence Framework, Dublin, Health Service Executive.
  •, HSE. (2014), Palliative Care Needs Assessment Guidance, Dublin,
  •, All Ireland Institute of Hospice and Palliative care. On-line learning resourses -learning platform,
  • website, Irish Hospice Foundation,
  • website, Irish Association for Palliative Care,
  • Publication, De Vlieger et al. (2004), European Association for Palliative Care a Guide for the Development of Palliative Nurse Education in Europe, Milan.