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NURS429 Therapeutics for Advanced Nursing

Consolidation of knowledge and skills for the Registered Nurse in physical and psychosocial assessment, pathophysiology, pharmacotherapeutics and diagnostic reasoning essential to safely prescribe and manage clients under supervision.

This paper gives students an opportunity to demonstrate, at an advanced level, knowledge and expertise in physical and psychosocial assessment, differential diagnosis, clinical decision making and prescribing under supervision. This knowledge and expertise contributes to the achievement of the competencies as determined by the Nursing Council of New Zealand for prescribing.

Paper title Therapeutics for Advanced Nursing
Paper code NURS429
Subject Nursing
EFTS 0.2500
Points 30 points
Teaching period Second Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $2,641.00
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $9,490.00

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NURS 405 and NURS 416
Limited to
MHealSc, PGDipHealSc
The applicant will be employed in a clinical area that supports the registered nurse to meet the Nursing Council New Zealand prescribing competencies for 150 hours concurrent with enrolment in this paper.
Teaching staff
Convenor: Shirley Harris
Paper Structure
The paper will provide the student with an opportunity to demonstrate at an advanced-level knowledge and expertise in physical and psychosocial assessment, differential diagnosis and clinical decision making in order to achieve the competencies for advanced nursing practice. Undertaking the therapeutics paper with concurrent workplace supervision provides advanced nursing practice development.
Teaching Arrangements
Three Study blocks - Two 3-day study blocks and one 2-day study block
Recommended: DiPiro J. et al. (2011). Pharmacotherapy: A Pathophysiologic Approach. (8th ed.). Sydney: McGraw-Hill.
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Ethics, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
Students who successfully complete the paper will
  1. Demonstrate integration of previously acquired knowledge of anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology, health assessment including diagnostics, differential diagnosis, pharmacology and new knowledge of therapeutics and other treatment options for the provision of care appropriate for advanced nursing practice
  2. Competently undertake the provision of care, including health promotion and disease prevention drawing on relevant theory, practice knowledge, research and best practice guidelines
  3. Demonstrate effective verbal and written communication, collaboration and consultation with the client, their family and other health providers
  4. Integrate knowledge of pharmacology, including pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics, and integrate this knowledge into prescribing
  5. Integrate into a plan of care an understanding of prescribing variation, individualising medication doses, antibiotic resistance, adverse drug reactions and interactions
  6. Demonstrate advanced problem solving and critical thinking to facilitate a client-centred, comprehensive, culturally safe, theory-driven, evidence-based plan and follow-up and revision as needed
  7. Initiate development of a formulary for future practice

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This paper will be offered subject to numbers, so early enrolment is recommended


Clinical Case Study 35%
Viva 35%
Client based assignment on Moodle 30%
Clinical logs and competence assessment terms

Further information

Amanda Clifford
Postgraduate Administrator
Centre for Postgraduate Nursing Studies
University of Otago, Christchurch
PO Box 4345, Christchurch, New Zealand
Tel +64 3 364 3852

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Second Semester

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system